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Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) and US President Donald Trump attend their bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Osaka on June 29, 2019.

Brendan Smialowski | AFP | Getty Images

President Donald Trump has the upper hand in the China trade war because tariffs are hurting the Chinese economy way more than the U.S. economy, CNBC’s Jim Cramer said Friday.

“Hate him or like him, he has them where he wants them,” said Cramer, characterizing Trump and his hard line approach to try to get China to change what the U.S. sees as decades of unfair trade practices.

Stocks opened sharply higher on Friday, with Trump casting a positive view on the China trade talks, which resumed in Washington Thursday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was soaring more than 300 points in early trading.

The president on Friday plans to meet with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He at the White House. On Thursday, he told reporters that Day 1 of negotiations went “really well.”

The discussions, aimed at ending the two nations’ 15-month trade war, come days before an Oct. 15 deadline when the U.S. plans to hike tariff rates on some $250 billion of Chinese goods to 30% from 25%.

CNBC’s before the bell news roundup

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