Trade dispute escalates

US Treasury names China currency manipulator

The Chinese government, after allowing the yuan to slide below the key 7/dollar level yesterday, took measures to halt the slide, when a US Treasury Department statement named China as a currency manipulator.

Global stock markets and energy markets sold off heavily yesterday before recovering, as investors sought out safe-haven investments. US equities fell sharply, while the dollar lost ground against G10 currencies on raised expectations of action from the Federal Reserve in September.

Losses across the board

Asian markets suffered across the board. The main losses were on the Hang Seng (as much as -2.41%) and the ASX 200 (-2.49%). The Nikkei and the Topix lost -1.80% and -1.75% respectively, with a stronger Japanese yen pressuring Japanese exporters.

European shares recovered after yesterday’s hammering, except for the FTSE 100, which lost 0.2% on early trading. Rolls Royce announced positive interim results, with losses narrowed and a forecast of improved cash generation. NMC Health lost -2.12%, while Centrica was down -1.97%. Just East was up 1.39%, on news of agreed merger terms with Takeaway.com, and JD Sports was up 1.07%.  

WTI crude fell to $53.72 a barrel, while Brent almost reached $60. Gold, on the other hand, jumped to $1475 an ounce.

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