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Asian shares climb on Trump trade deal comments

By Ritu,

Capital Sands

 

Asian shares rose on Wednesday as upbeat signals from Sino-U.S. trade talks fanned hopes of an easing of tariff hostilities, while expectations the Federal Reserve will keep interest rates low supported sentiment.

The positive mood pushed Wall Street indexes to fresh record closing highs on Tuesday and stoked confidence in Asia with MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan up 0.19%. Australian shares  added 0.65% and Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.36%.

Chinese blue-chip shares), in contrast, dropped 0.39% after the data showed profits at China’s industrial firms declined in annual terms for the third consecutive month in October, tracking sustained drops in producer prices and exports and underscoring slowing momentum in the world’s second-largest economy.

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Tuesday the United States and China are close to agreement on the first phase of a trade deal after top negotiators from the two countries spoke by telephone and agreed to keep working on remaining issues.

But while Trump said Washington was in the “final throes” of work on a trade deal with Beijing, he also underscored U.S. support for protesters in Hong Kong, seen as a sore point for Beijing.

Trump’s comments came alongside softer-than-expected economic data from the United States, which showed a fourth straight monthly contraction in consumer confidence and an unexpected drop in new home sales in October.

On Wednesday, the rally in U.S. Treasuries moderated across the curve, with benchmark 10-year notes yielding 1.7483%, up from their U.S. close of 1.74% on Tuesday.

The two-year yield, watched as a guide to market expectations of Fed policy, rose to 1.5959% compared with a U.S. close of 1.586%.

In currency markets, the dollar strengthened 0.06% against the yen to 109.10 <jpy=>and the euro was slightly weaker, buying $1.1017.</jpy=>

The dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was up 0.06% at 98.313.

Oil prices retreated after rising Tuesday on reassuring trade headlines. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was down 0.34% at $58.21 per barrel.

Global benchmark Brent crude lost 0.33% to $64.06 per barrel.

Gold was lower, changing hands at $1,459.43 per ounce on the spot market, down 0.12%.

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Dollar hits 1-week high on yen as U.S.-China trade deal hopes rise

By Ritu,

Capital Sands

 

The dollar held an upper hand against the yen on Tuesday as optimism on a trade deal between the United States and China dented the allure of the safe-haven unit while the British pound was supported by hopes of an end to a hung parliament.

China’s Global Times, a tabloid run by the ruling Communist Party’s official People’s Daily, said on Monday on its Twitter feed the two countries are very close to a “phase one” trade deal, discounting “negative” media reports. report raised optimism the deal and lifted the dollar against the yen to as high as 109.02 yen JPY= , a one-week high, by early Asian trade on Tuesday.

“China appears positive to the deal. The dollar could rise further to around 109.50 if U.S. officials will visit China,” said Yukio Ishizuki, senior strategist at Daiwa Securities.

Last week, the Chinese government invited United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to Beijing for face-to-face talks, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“Trading in the next couple of weeks will be all about the U.S.-China deal,” said Daiwa’s Ishizuki.

The euro softened to $1.1013 EUR= , near one-week low of $1.10035 touched on Monday.

Sterling traded at $1.2900 GBP=D4 , supported by hopes that the ruling Conservatives could win a majority in the Dec. 12 election to end a hung parliament.

Against the euro, the British unit stood at 85.365 pence per euro, near six-month high of 85.22 touched Monday last week.

The Australian dollar fetched $0.6776 AUD=D4 , having touched a one-month low of $0.6768 overnight.

Despite rising hopes of U.S.-China trade deal, the Aussie has been pressured by a run of disappointing local economic data that has led investors to narrow the odds on another rate cut from the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA).

Overall, currency trading is slowing down ahead of U.S.

 

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Maharashtra govt formation live updates: Supreme Court to pass order on Maharashtra at 10.30am on Tuesday

SC today said it will pass its order at 10.30 am on Tuesday on the Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress combine’s plea against the Maharashtra governor’s decision to swear-in Fadnavis as chief minister. Stay here for all live updates

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Asia shares regain footing as mood swings on trade

By Ritu,

Capital Sands

 

Asian shares made guarded gains on Monday as investors dared to hope for some progress in the endless Sino-U.S. trade dispute, while the outperformance of recent U.S. economic data gave the dollar a leg up on its peers.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan bounced 0.8%, after losing 0.4% last week.

Japan’s Nikkei .N225 firmed 0.9%, while Australian stocks .AXJO rose 0.5% and Shanghai blue chips .CSI300 0.4%.

E-Mini futures for the S&P 500 ESc1 added 0.3%, while EUROSTOXX 50 futures STXEc1 gained 0.6%.

On Saturday, U.S. national security adviser Robert O’Brien said an initial trade agreement with China is still possible by the end of the year, though he warned Washington would not turn a blind eye to what happens in Hong Kong. comments add to worries that a Chinese crackdown on anti-government protests in Hong Kong could further complicate the talks.

Over the weekend, pro-democracy candidates in Hong Kong romped to a landslide and symbolic majority in district council elections in the embattled city. are showing some signs of tiring of the steady drip feed of upbeat comments from U.S. officials and no signs of a final agreement looking likely,” said Robert Rennie, head of financial market strategy at Westpac.

“Key for markets will thus be whether the Dec. 15 tariffs covering approximately $156 billion of largely technology imports are postponed and whether a deal can be signed ahead of that date, with press suggesting that these tariffs will be delayed to give negotiators more time.”

Reuters reported an ambitious “phase two” trade deal was also looking less likely, according to U.S. and Beijing officials, lawmakers and trade experts. DIRTY’

In currency markets, the dollar had rallied on Friday when U.S. manufacturing surveys beat forecasts, just as European Union numbers disappointed. economic data outperformed, highlighting again the resilience of the economy and that while global growth has slowed, it remains the least dirty t-shirt in the laundry basket,” said Tapas Strickland, a director of economics and markets at National Australia Bank.

“For the EU data, the important takeaway was the ongoing decline in the manufacturing sector is now spreading to the larger services sector, a worrying sign for the global economy.”

European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde on Friday called on euro zone governments to strengthen domestic demand after a global trade war brought a decade of export-driven growth to an abrupt end. Reserve Chair Jerome Powell speaks later on Monday and is expected to underline the steady outlook for rates given the better economic figures.

The euro was off at $1.1023 EUR= on Monday, having breached chart support at $1.1040, while the dollar edged up to 108.75 yen JPY= .

The dollar was steady on a basket of currencies at 98.243 .DXY , after gaining 0.3% last week.

 

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Dollar slips as Chinese comments marginally boost risk appetite

By Ritu,

https://capitalsands.com/

The dollar was marginally down on Friday and risk appetite boosted by statements from China on the need to find a solution to the tit-for-tat tariff war with the United States, raising hopes that a “phase one” deal could be reached.

Chinese President Xi Jinping said Beijing wants to work out a deal with Washington and has been trying to avoid a trade war – but is not afraid to retaliate when necessary. senior Chinese diplomat urged the United States to compromise in order to develop stable relations between the countries. after a week of mixed signals over the likelihood of a preliminary trade deal, the developments did little to move markets. Currencies continued to trade in tight ranges.

Against a basket of currencies, .DXY , the dollar was down less than 0.1%, breaking its three-day streak of gains and heading for its smallest weekly change since the start of August this year.

The Swiss franc was down 0.2% against both the dollar CHF=EBS and the euro EURCHF=EBS , suggesting market optimism as the Swiss franc is perceived as a safe-haven currency.

But the Japanese yen – also seen as a safe haven – was flat against the dollar JPY=EBS .

The trade-exposed New Zealand dollar and Swedish crown were both up 0.2% against the U.S. dollar NZD=D3 .

MUFG currency analyst Lee Hardman wrote in a note that low volatility and tight trading ranges are currently the key characteristics of the FX market.

German third quarter GDP data released earlier this morning held no surprises, showing that exports, state spending and consumers helped the German economy avoid a recession. to now, the slowdown in Germany has been concentrated in the manufacturing sector,” Daria Parkhomenko, forex strategy associate at RBC Capital Markets, wrote in a note to clients.

“Unless global uncertainties are lifted, which are weighing down on the manufacturing sector, it is only a question of when, not if, the weakness in manufacturing spreads to the rest of the economy,” she wrote.

The euro was slightly up against the weaker dollar EUR=EBS .

Flash eurozone PMI data were due at 0900 GMT.

 

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Oil falls from 2-month high as U.S.-China trade doubts dominate

By Ritu,

Capital Sands

 

Oil prices were toppled from their highest in nearly two months on Friday by doubts over future demand for crude as uncertainty continues to shroud a potential U.S.-China trade deal, and along with it the health of the global economy.

That was more than enough to offset news of a likely extension of production cuts among major producers that drove prices higher in the previous session on the prospect of tight crude supply.

By 0159 GMT, Brent crude futures LCOc1 had slid 30 cents, or 0.5%, to $63.67 a barrel. West Texas Intermediate crude CLc1 was at $58.24 a barrel, down 34 cents or 0.6%.

“The key factor for the demand outlook for oil is the (U.S.-China) trade negotiation currently going on,” said Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC (NS:CMC) Markets and Stockbroking in Sydney.

“With oil near the top of recent trading ranges it’s no surprise to see a bit of selling pressure during the session today.”

Prices had touched their highest since late September on Thursday after Reuters reported that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and Russia are likely to extend existing production cuts by another three months to mid-2020 when they meet on Dec. 5. was also buoyed by comments from China’s commerce ministry on Thursday that it will strive to reach an initial agreement with the United States to end the pair’s long-running trade war, allaying fears that talks might be unravelling. However, the completion of a phase one deal could slide into next year. that last week saw the biggest drawdown in three months for U.S. crude stock stockpiles at Cushing, Oklahoma also underpinned prices earlier this week. Cushing is the delivery point for WTI futures. EIA/S

Elsewhere, traders are also keeping a keen eye on the impact on oil production at OPEC countries Iran and Iraq amid ongoing protests

 

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Trade War Threatens Tech Sectors in China and Silicon Valley

By Ritu,

Capital Sands

 

While the U.S-China trade war rages on, the tensions are exposing growing rifts between China and Silicon Valley.

Leading venture capitalists and startup founders expressed concern over their governments’ fierce differences and the potential fallout. Among the dangers are a decline in cross-border investment, disruption in the supply chain and decreased collaboration in fields like artificial intelligence, wireless technology and cancer research.

Signs of trouble are emerging in everything from venture capital to movie-making. Fundraising for dollar-based venture capital funds in China is down 75%, estimates Qiming Venture Partners’ founding partner Gary Rieschel. Olivia Hao, an executive at Beijing-based film production startup Baozou, said it is increasingly hard to make investments or buy other companies in the U.S.

China and the U.S. are edging closer to a trade deal but the deteriorating situation in Hong Kong and the U.S. bill on the city’s special status threaten to stall negotiations.

The fight to rule the technology sector is at the heart of China-U.S. tensions. Over the last few decades, the two countries have woven together a world-spanning supply chain that helped create innovation like Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL).’s iPhone and propel industries like AI and robotics.

American money has flowed into China, lending the capital essential in creating many of the countries’ top technology companies like Alibaba (NYSE:BABA) Group Holding Ltd. and Tencent Holdings Ltd. Chinese and American engineers have traversed both countries, driving innovation at startups and large companies alike. All of that is under the microscope now that the U.S. is clamping down on Chinese investment in the U.S. and scrutinizing the capital flows between the two countries.

“Foreign capital remains the primary provider of early stage risk capital in China,” Rieschel said, adding that “82% of venture capital goes to the U.S. and China, these two countries have to work together in areas like AI.”

Increasingly, American tech companies, venture capitalists and startups face a narrow choice on how to deal with China: Either take the country at face value and decide that as a rational business, profits matter more than any kind of moral high ground, or make a conscious decision to stop pursuing business in a country that will require you to adhere to its viewpoints inside — and outside — its borders.

 

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Asian Markets Fall; Trade Tensions Intensify as U.S. Congress Passes HK Bill

By Ritu

Capital Sands

Asian markets fell in morning trade on Thursday, with Hong Kong stocks down more than 1.5% following news that both chambers of Congress passed a pro-Hong Kong rights bill.

The Hang Seng Index last traded at 26,450 by 10:30 PM ET (02:30 GMT), down 1.6%. Tensions in the city rose after the U.S. chamber passed two bills to protect human rights in Hong Kong.

One of the bill is the S. 1838, which would require annual reviews of Hong Kong’s special trade status under U.S. law and sanction officials deemed responsible for human rights abuses and undermining the city’s autonomy.

Another Senate bill, S. 2710, was also passed to ban the export of crowd-control items such as tear gas and rubber bullets to Hong Kong police.

Trump now faces a dilemma, as the bills comes at a tricky time. The president has been pushing for a partial trade agreement with China and a confrontation at this period of time could imperil a long-awaited trade deal.

China’s Shanghai Composite dropped 0.4% in morning trade, while the Shenzhen Component inched up 0.1%.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 lost 1.1%, while South Korea’s KOSPI traded 1.3% lower.

Down under, Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.7%.

Overnight in the U.S, the Federal Reserve released the minutes from its October policy meeting.

The central bank said the stance of policy “likely would remain” where it is “as long as incoming information about the economy did not result in a material reassessment of the economic outlook.”

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