The announcement by the US Treasury follows a sharp fall in the value of the Chinese yuan against the dollar.
The drop caught markets off-guard as Beijing usually supports the currency.
Last week, China pledged to retaliate after US President Donald Trump vowed to impose 10% tariffs on $300bn (£246.7bn) of Chinese imports.
On Monday, the yuan passed the seven-per-dollar level for the first time since 2008, prompting Mr Trump to accuse China on Twitter of manipulating its currency.
The US government said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will now engage with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) "to eliminate the unfair competitive advantage created by China's latest actions".