Trade ruling against S. Korean firms could aid Whirlpool

By Karl Henkel

Trade experts say a U.S. Department of Commerce decision Wednesday on trade subsidies could help Michigan-based Whirlpool Corp. but lead to higher-priced clothes washers for consumers. The Commerce Department said Wednesday that South Korean washing machine manufacturers and exporters have illegally received government subsidies ranging from 0.22 percent to 70.58 percent. Last year, Whirlpool accused South Korean and Mexican makers of large residential clothes washers of "dumping" or unfairly selling their appliances below cost. Attila Yaprak, professor of marketing and international business at Wayne State University's School of Business Administration, said many emerging market companies are taking away market share from American and other Western companies. "Companies will do everything they can to recapture or regain losses," he said.

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