Stocks suffer from mounting worries over trade, global growth

13 Août, 2019, 20:27 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange in New York

Stocks in Argentina plummeted and the Argentinian peso fell sharply following a primary victory for a populist ticket in the nation's presidential elections. The narrowing of the yield curve kept gains in check, as the recession signal emanating from the bond market grew louder.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index reversed losses sparked by disappointing investor sentiment data in Germany.

Investors were rattled by a Chinese government statement Monday saying mostly nonviolent protests in Hong Kong were "beginning to show the sprouts of terrorism" and were an "existential threat" to the population. Japan's Topix gauge erased this year's gain as it reopened following a long weekend.

The latest sell-off in risk assets provided another reminder of the fragile mood across markets extending the rocky start to August. With the US and China offering no respite to their trade war and a slew of data pointing to slowing global growth, traders will look to this week's euro-zone GDP figures and industrial production reports from both China and America for further clues to the outlook.

Signs of the trade war's impact are growing. Singapore's government cut its forecast for economic growth this year to nearly zero as the trade war dampens the region's most trade-reliant economies. Traders have responded by selling stocks and buying government bonds.

Companies releasing results include China's Tencent, JD.com and Alibaba, Cisco, Brazilian utility Eletrobras, the U.K.'s Prudential, Australia's Telstra, giant retailer Walmart, Nvidia, Swisscom and the Danish brewer Carlsberg.

Wednesday brings data on China retail sales, industrial production and the jobless rate.

The Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell for a third day, dragged down by industrial and banking shares, while contracts on the three major US equity indexes swung between gains and losses.

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Ten of the 11 major S&P sectors were in the red, with the S&P 500 financial index shedding 0.85% and leading the losers. The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks lost 18.58 points, or 1.2%, to 1,494.46. The euro strengthened to $1.1219 from $1.1207.

The two-year rate rose to 1.6 per cent.

The drop in yields is amplifying worries about the economy; the spread between the two-year and 10-year yields has narrowed to 6 bps after the two-year yield fell 5 bps to 1.58% and the 10-year tumbled 10 bps to 1.64%, not far from an inversion of the 2-10 spread that is widely viewed as a recession indicator. Hong Kong futures dropped more than 1% after regular trading closed Monday.

Gold rose $8.70 to $1,505.30 per ounce, silver rose 14 cents to $17.04 per ounce and copper was unchanged at $2.58 per pound.

Benchmark crude oil rose 43 cents to settle at $54.93 a barrel.

The dollar fell to 105.27 Japanese yen from 105.57 yen on Friday.

-With assistance from Katherine Greifeld, Andreea Papuc and Todd White.

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