The roiled solar power market shows how Trump's tariffs can disrupt an industry

A 30% U.S. tariff on imported solar panels put in place last winter should have caused prices here to jump.

But when tariffs are unleashed, as businesses are learning, things don’t always go as expected.

Therein lies a cautionary tale of the uncertainty in store for other industries as the Trump administration’s latest tariffs took effect Friday against hundreds of Chinese imports valued at $34 billion, including semiconductors, farm machinery, medical devices and aircraft parts.

China immediately retaliated against U.S. shipments of farm produce, dairy products and automobiles.

Prices on solar panels did rise last summer as the Trump administration publicly considered the tariffs, mostly on imports from China and other Asian countries. That caused U.S. companies to scramble to purchase as many foreign panels as they could to beat the looming duties.

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