It was a volatile day for US markets. Indexes swung sharply after China’s Ministry of Commerce announced a 25% tariff on $US50 billion worth of US exports Wednesday morning. Among the 106 affected products were some of the biggest American exports to China, including aircraft, autos, and soybeans.
To the scoreboard:
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 24,264.92 +231.56 (+0.96%)
S&P 500: 2,643.63 +29.18 (+1.12%)
AUD/USD: 0.7715 +0.0031 (+0.40%)
ASX 200 SPI futures (June contracts): 5,764.0 (+24)
- US stocks climbed back up after getting clobbered Wednesday morning. The Dow Jones industrial average erased a more than 500 point loss, led by gains in shares of Apple and IBM.
- Still, some aircraft companies didn’t completely recover.Boeing – the single largest US exporter to China – shed more than 3% at its lows. Shares in Boeing closed 1.06% lower.
- Prices of soybeans, which were listed as products affected by Chinese tariffs on the US, also took a hit, closing at $US10.17 — down around 2%. President Trump won eight of last year’s top 10 soybean-producing states in the 2016 election.
- Bonds and currencies fluctuated throughout the day. 10-year US treasury yields edged back above 2.8%, while the Aussie dollar remains well supported above US77 cents. CBA currency strategist Elias Haddad said the AUD’s strength is a sign currency markets aren’t convinced that the US-China protectionist rhetoric will weigh on global growth.
- Major cryptocurrencies fell sharply, with the digital currency market losing more than $US7 billion in just half an hour.
- Facebook admitted that up to 87 million users could have been affected by an information leak to the data firm Cambridge Analytica. Shares in the company closed 0.65% lower. Facebook later added that most of its 2 billion users may have had their data compromised by “malicious actors”.
Today’s economic calendar:
- Chinese banks will be closed in observance of Tomb Sweeping Day.
- Australia’s trade numbers will be released. The median forecast is for a $700 million surplus in February.
Have a great day.
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