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The headline number is impressive: a quarter of trillion dollars’ worth of deals from China that President Donald Trump can use to show he is creating opportunities for U.S. businesses and jobs for his base.

The reality, however, is that the roughly 15 agreements unveiled on Thursday are mostly nonbinding memorandums of understanding and could take years to materialize — if they do at all. A day earlier, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross announced $9 billion of deals, many also MOUs with few details, rather than contracts.

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