Asian markets were mixed in early trading Friday, after China threatened to retaliate if the Trump administration goes ahead with its latest tariff threats, yet still held out hopes for a trade deal.
Beijing will take unspecified “necessary countermeasures,” China’s Cabinet said in a one-sentence statement. It gave no details or any indication plans for trade talks in Washington in September might be affected.
President Donald Trump has said he plans to impose 10% tariffs on an additional $300 billion of Chinese imports starting Sept. 1, extending penalties to almost everything the United States buys from China. The Chinese announcement made no mention of Trump’s decision Wednesday to postpone penalties on about 60% of those goods until Dec. 15.
Still, officials from China’s foreign ministry later said they hope a trade deal will still be worked out, and said Trump and President Xi Jinping have remained in contact.
Meanwhile, investors were keeping an eye on U.S. bonds. The the 30-year Treasury yield
fell to an all-time low Thursday, while the yield on the benchmark 10-year note
hit a three-year low.
recovered from an early dip and was last about flat, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index
advanced 0.5%. The Shanghai Composite
gained 0.5% while the Shenzhen Composite
rose 0.6%. South Korea’s Kospi
fell 0.9%, while benchmark indexes in Taiwan
were mixed. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200
Among individual stocks, Screen Holdings
rose in Tokyo trading, while robotics maker Fanuc
fell. In Hong Kong, Ping An Insurance
and New World Development
gained, while Tencent
slipped. SK Hynix
and LG Electronics
declined in South Korea, and Foxconn
advanced in Taiwan. In Australia, Oil Search
sank while Fortescue Metals
China’s central bank set the daily midpoint for the yuan at 7.0312 per U.S. dollar, the seventh consecutive session it’s been set weaker than the 7 level.