Global Stocks Struggle After Bad Month

Reuters

Reuters

Asian shares posted steep declines Friday, adding to global stock market losses after President Donald Trump vowed to impose stiff steel and aluminum tariffs, sparking fears of a trade war.

The tariffs could dampen profits for everything from vehicle makers to beer companies and result in higher prices for consumers.

As a candidate, Trump often campaigned on an "America First" trade policy, but hadn't taken many steps to implement that since he took office.

The S&P 500 fell 3 points, or 014%, to 2,710, with six of the 11 main sectors trading lower. The euro rose to $1.2331 from $1.2255, and the British pound rose to $1.3790 from $1.3768.

Best Buy has been one of the best performing retail stocks over the last few years.

Around noon, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 9.95 points, or 0.04 per cent, to 25,039.15, reports Xinhua.

The S&P 500 fell for a third straight day after President Donald Trump said the US would slap tariffs on. Apple, the most valuable USA company, got 63 percent of its sales from outside the United States in its latest fiscal year.

A "trade war is in no one's interests", said Roberto Azevedo, head of the World Trade Organization. He vowed that "the European Union will react firmly and commensurately to defend our interests".

US crude oil futures settled 1.1 percent lower at $60.99 a barrel, under pressure from a retreating stock market and worries about surging USA crude output.

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman arrives in Egypt
Egypt and Saudi have strengthened ties since Sisi took power after ousting the Muslim Brotherhood in 2013. Recent investments and potential investments between Saudi Arabia and Egypt.

This also lifted the yield for USA 10 year government bonds, a global benchmark for commercial lending, past a four-year high of 2.92 per cent.

Since the stock market's correction earlier this month, the Dow and S&P 500 have clawed back more than half of their losses. Aerospace giant Boeing lost $12.52, or 3.5 percent, to $349.69.

Energy and health care companies fell more than the rest of the market.

The Nasdaq Composite Index declined 17 points, or 0.2%, to 7,254. Core prices rose 0.2%, down from December's 0.3% advance and below views for a 0.3% rise. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note sank to 2.81 percent from 2.86 percent late Wednesday.

USA stock-market indexes switched between gains and losses on Thursday, after Federal Reserve chief Jerome Powell said he saw no signs of significant wage inflation as he testified before a Senate committee. He also said, "I would expect that some continued strengthening in the labor market can take place without causing inflation".

"You start putting tariffs on stuff you're importing into your country, the prices are going up and obviously you have higher inflation, you have higher interest rates".

Worries about potentially higher rates and inflation have reintroduced markets to volatility following their unusually calm run in 2017 and early this year. The loonie is nearly down two cents against the USA dollar since February 16. The contract lost 65 cents to settle at $60.99 per barrel on Thursday.

The dollar fell to 105.54 Japanese yen from 106.24 yen late Thursday.

In Europe, France's CAC 40 lost 2.4 per cent, and Germany's DAX fell 2.3 per cent. London's FTSE 100 was down 0.7% in afternoon trade.

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