NEW YORK: Losses on Wall Street deepened in late-morning trade on Thursday as the arrest of a key Chinese executive at the urging of the United States exacerbated trade war fears.
Near 1630 GMT, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 2.3 percent at 24,446.09 after earlier falling more than three percent. The blue-chip index has lost almost 1,400 points in the last two sessions.
The broad-based S&P slid 2.0 percent to 2,645.74, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index shed 2.4 percent to 6,998.19.
The drops, which pushed both the Dow and S&P 500 into the red for 2018, came after the arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou in Canada for extradition to the United States in an investigation into suspected Iran sanctions violations by the telecom giant.
The Meng arrest stirred tensions just as the United States and China agreed to a ceasefire in their trade spat while negotiators seek a deal within three months.
“The concept of getting a quick resolution is fading,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at B. Riley FBR.
After rallying on Monday following the US-China ceasefire on tariffs announced over the weekend, US markets had fallen sharply on Tuesday on skepticism about the agreement.
US markets were closed on Wednesday because of the funeral of former President George H.W. Bush but resumed their downward move on Thursday following the Meng arrest.
Other headwinds facing stocks include worries over slowing US growth that is promoting greater uncertainty on whether the Federal Reserve will increase interest rates later this month.
Petroleum-linked stocks were also down amid a pullback in oil prices as OPEC members debated a production cut.
Large banks were particularly weak, with Bank of America losing four percent, Citigroup 5.6 percent and JPMorgan Chase 3.5 percent as investors now view the odds of a Fed rate hike on December 19 at 69.8 percent, down from 82.7 percent a week ago, according to futures markets.
Boeing also suffered outsized losses, shedding 6.2 percent on trade war fears and as the aerospace giant continues to face scrutiny following an October 29 accident in Indonesia in which 189 people died.
The head of the carrier, Lion Mentari Airlines, has reportedly threatened to cancel orders of additional Boeing planes.
Tokyo bourse closes in the green
TOKYO: Shares edged up today with investors expressing relief as US President Donald Trump appeared to take a softer stance on his thorny trade dispute with Japan.
The key Nikkei 225 index rose 0.31 percent, or 65.36 points, to close at 21,182.58, while the broader Topix index was up 0.38 percent, or 5.79 points, at 1,547.00.
“Players were relieved as President Trump did not take a tough stance on the US-Japan trade issue,” Daiwa Securities chief technical analyst Eiji Kinouchi told AFP.
After a fun-filled weekend of golf and sumo, Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe held formal talks Monday, with trade and tensions with North Korea topping the agenda.
Ahead of their talks, Trump hinted that tough negotiations on their bilateral trade could wait until after July elections in Japan.
Trump tweeted: “Great progress being made in our Trade Negotiations with Japan. Agriculture and beef heavily in play.”
In remarks after the closing bell, Trump also told reporters: “We hope to have even more to announce on the trade, very very soon.”
The dollar fetched 109.52 yen in Asian afternoon trade, against 109.29 yen in New York late Friday.
In Tokyo, Nissan was up 0.97 percent at 747.8 yen after news that its French alliance partner Renault and Italian-US auto giant Fiat Chrysler are weighing a potential merger.
Its rival Toyota gained 0.79 percent to 6,554 yen while Honda was down 1.11 percent at 2,759 yen.
Takeda Pharmaceutical jumped 2.46 percent to 3,942 yen while telecom and investment firm SoftBank Group was up 1.65 percent at 10,465 yen.
Dep. PM of Uzbekistan arrives in Islamabad
ISLAMABAD: Deputy Prime Minister of Uzbekistan Elyor Ganiev has arrived here today on a two-day visit to Pakistan.
Elyor Ganiev is accompanied by a high-level delegation comprising Deputy Ministers for Investment and Foreign Trade, Transport and other senior officials.
He is scheduled to meet a number of Federal Ministers and Advisers. He will hold consultations with Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi. The talks will focus on discussing ways and means to further bolster the bilateral relations between Pakistan and Uzbekistan.
A relevant piece published earlier:
Govt. to further strengthen Sino-Pak partnership
ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has expressed the govt’s commitment to further strengthen Sino-Pak strategic partnership.
He was addressing Friends of Silk Road Forum organized in honor of visiting Chinese Vice President Wang Qishan here today.
The Foreign Minister said both countries are observing 2019 as a year of mutual relations and it is expected that people to people contacts will reach a new level.
Shah Mehmood Qureshi said CPEC has helped to strengthen bilateral relations and take economic and social development to new heights.
He said the CPEC has entered into its second phase which focuses on industrial, social and economic cooperation. He expressed the confidence that Special Economic Zones will pave way for the progress of Pakistan.
Foreign Minister said the government has a special focus on poverty alleviation, industrial development, education, technology, scientific innovation, and agricultural development.
He said both the countries have common thinking of improving the living standard of their people. He hoped that the development target will be achieved by mutually harnessing the capabilities of the two countries.
Foreign Minister paid rich tributes to the services of the Chinese Vice President in promoting the strategic partnership between the two countries.
A relevant piece published earlier: