Co-operation best for both China and USA, says Xi

03 January, 2019, 00:03 | Author: Dave Hampton
  • Trump said he had had

The U.S. tech industry is also being hard hit by Trump's tariffs.

Trading has been highly volatile in December, capping a year of turbulence for markets. Though the company did not specifically cite Trump administration tariffs, USA automakers have been hit hard by the rise in steel prices brought by higher US duties on imported steel.

On Jan. 1, 1979, the United States forged diplomatic ties with the Peoples' Republic of China while cutting relations with the Republic of China on Taiwan, 30 years after mainland China's Communist Party came to power. A slowing US housing market and forecasts of weaker global growth in 2019 stoked traders' unease. The VIX volatility index spiked, and CNN Business' Fear & Greed Index has been stuck in "Extreme Fear" throughout much of the year. A Christmas Eve plunge brought it briefly into bear market territory, or a drop of 20 per cent from its peak, before closing just short of the threshold that would have meant the end of the market's almost 10-year bull market run.

The market then reversed over the last three months as the Federal Reserve's chairman, Jerome Powell, said that the central bank had embarked on increases to normalize interest rates. The S&P 500 set an all-time record on September 20, and the Dow closed at its record on October 3. Sixty-four percent of the more than 400 companies surveyed said they were considering relocating production lines to outside of China, but only 1 percent said they had any plans to establish manufacturing bases in North America.

S&P 500 ( SPX ) soars to 2,506.38, adding +0.82%. China says it is still on track to hit its growth target of around 6.5 percent in 2018, down from 6.9 percent in 2017, but the economy is expected to lose further momentum in 2019.

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To compensate suffering farmers, the US government has allocated about $11 billion to direct payments and buying agricultural goods for government food programs, after consulting economists, including Tyner.

THAT HEALTHY FEELING: Health care stocks were among the biggest gainers. Utilities were the only other sector to eke out an annual gain, adding 0.5 per cent.

Washington and Beijing imposed tit-for-tat tariffs on more than $300 billion worth in goods in total two-way trade earlier this year, locking them in a conflict that has begun to eat into profits and contributed to stock market plunges.

Energy companies fared the worst, plunging 20.5 per cent for the year, as the price of USA crude oil tumbled around 40 per cent from a four-year peak of $76 a barrel in October. It advanced 72 cents to $45.33 per barrel on Friday. Brent crude, the benchmark for global prices, gained 97 cents to $54.19 per barrel.

Despite Monday's advance, equities ended the year largely in the red, victims of investor anxiety over trade tensions and slowing economic growth.

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Last week, the Dow lost 1,655 points, making it the worst week for the stock market since the financial crash of 2008. A day later, the Dow took a nosedive of more than 650 points , the worst Christmas Eve trading day ever.

Chinese president Xi Jinping has called for his United States counterpart, Donald Trump, to reach a compromise on trade, as discussions continue to avert the imposition of heavy tariffs on goods.

Trump tweeted: "Just had a long and very good call with President Xi of China". If made, it will be very comprehensive, covering all subjects, areas and points of dispute. This led to an oversupply that reduced Chinese processing margins and led factories this summer to make the biggest cuts in years to the production of soymeal used to feed livestock.

Xi added, "History has proved that cooperation is the best choice for both sides".

The U.S. formally established ties with the People's Republic of China on January 1, 1979, cementing a rapprochement that began seven years earlier with President Richard Nixon's landmark visit to Beijing. The euro was flat at $1.1433. One estimated the economic impact of lost wages and higher prices at $2,400 per household in 2019.

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