Global markets mixed on uncertainty about US-China trade war

A woman walks by an electronic stock board of a securities firm in Tokyo, Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2019. Asian shares were mostly higher Tuesday after Wall Street rallied on the U.S. decision to give Chinese telecom giant Huawei another 90 days to buy equipment from American suppliers. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)

TOKYO (AP) — Global shares were mixed Tuesday as investors found reason to be cautiously optimistic again about the potential for progress in the costly trade war between the U.S. and China.

France’s CAC 40 was little changed but inching down less than 0.1% at 5,349.26 in early trading. Germany’s DAX inched down nearly 0.2% to 11,639.18. Britain’s FTSE 100 dipped 0.4% to 7,066.93. U.S. shares were set to drift lower with Dow futures falling 0.2% to 25,882. S&P 500 futures were also down 0.2% at 2,878.20.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 rose nearly 1.0% to finish at 20,456.08. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 added 0.5% to 6,471.20, while South Korea’s Kospi gained 0.4% to 1,924.60. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.3% to 25,613.07. The Shanghai Composite added 1.4% to 2,902.19.

“It remains all about trade as President Donald Trump’s comments on the matter had once again been the primary driver for markets at the start of the week. Even though the sentiment had taken a positive turn on the latest update, uncertainty nevertheless persists to warrant a more cautious stance,” said Jingyi Pan, market strategist at IG in Singapore.

Monday’s rally on Wall Street got its start early after President Donald Trump said his negotiators had received encouraging calls from China on Sunday, though China’s foreign ministry denied knowledge of any such calls.

The major U.S. indexes are each on track for losses of 3% or more in August in what has been a volatile month for the market as investors try to gauge whether trade conflicts and slowing economies around the world will drag the U.S. into a recession.

On Friday, China announced new tariffs on $75 billion in U.S. goods. Trump responded angrily on Twitter, at one point saying he “hereby ordered” U.S. companies with operations in China to consider moving them to other countries, including the U.S.

Analysts say uncertainties are bound to remain on global markets as long as Trump continues to send conflicting messages.

“The bigger picture is that deep-seated issues are unlikely to be resolved on the flick of a switch or tweet,” said a report from the Asia & Oceania Treasury Department of Mizuho Bank.

Trump later announced the U.S. would increase existing tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese goods to 30% from 25%, and that new tariffs on another $300 billion of imports would be 15% instead of 10%.

Global markets appeared headed for another wave of selling early Monday, when indexes in Asia closed lower, until Trump said his trade negotiators had received two “very good calls” from China.

During a news conference in France after the Group of Seven industrialized nations’ meeting, Trump said “China wants to make a deal, and if we can, we will make a deal.”


Benchmark crude oil rose 29 cents to $53.93 a barrel. It fell 53 cents to settle at $53.64 a barrel. Brent crude oil, the international standard, rose 35 cents to $59.05 a barrel.


The dollar fell to 105.71 Japanese yen from 105.88 yen on Monday. The euro weakened to $1.1102 from $1.1118.