Stock Market News Today 2018/08/08
US-China trade dispute. China stocks down, renminbi steady as US escalates trade war. Stocks in China fell but the renminbi held its ground on Wednesday after US trade officials announced they would levy tariffs on a further $16bn of Chinese imports from August 23.
The CSI 300 index of major Shanghai and Shenzhen-listed stocks was down 0.6 per cent following the latest move in the escalating trade war between Washington and Beijing.
The onshore renminbi exchange rate, which moves within a trading band of 2 per cent either side of a daily mid point set by the People’s Bank of China, was 0.2 per cent firmer at Rmb6.8175 per dollar.
India needs more reforms to reach 8% growth – IMF. The International Monetary Fund says India needs to undertake more substantive economic reforms if it wants to push its economic growth rate to its long-held target range of 8 to 10 percent a year.
In its latest evaluation of India’s economy – released Wednesday, the IMF predicted that India’s GDP will grow by 7.3 percent during the current April to March financial year, and accelerate to 7.5 percent next year, allowing India to retain its status as “the fastest growing major economy in the world.”
However, Ranil Salgado, assistant director for the IMF’s Asia department, said that India’s maximum growth potential “under the current policy framework” is just a tad higher, at 7.75 percent a year.
Asia-Pacific equities edge higher despite fresh trade worries. Asia-Pacific stocks were mostly in positive territory in early trading on Wednesday as a strong day for equities and oil prices in the US helped to offset fresh trade tension with China.
Tokyo’s Topix rose 0.4 per cent with gains for the telecoms, energy, industrials and financials segments.
In Hong Kong the Hang Seng index was up 0.2 per cent, led by gains from energy and technology stocks. Shares in China Tower were steady in the first hour of trading after the largest flotation on the stock exchange in several years.
MTR shares slip amid construction scandal fallout. Shares in the operator of Hong Kong’s metro system and London’s Crossrail fell on Wednesday after the company announced the departure of its chief executive following questions over construction quality on a new line.
MTR Corporation said its Chief executive Lincoln Leong has taken early retirement but will not depart until a replacement is found, while projects director Philco Wong resigned with immediate effect.
Concerns over the construction of a platform on the HK$97bn ($12.4bn) Sha Tin-Central link surfaced through media reports in May and were followed by reports of possible issues at two further stations. The Hong Kong government demanded an incident report on the Hung Hom platform construction from the MTR in May.
Disney lifts spending ahead of streaming launch. Second-quarter earnings undershoot Wall Street forecasts as it readies Netflix rival. A hot summer at the box office was not enough for Disney to beat profit forecasts, as the company spent heavily on its upcoming streaming service and prepares to compete head-on with Netflix.
Disney undershot Wall Street forecasts for earnings and revenues in its most recent quarter, sending shares down as much as 3 per cent in after-hours trading on Tuesday.
Bob Iger, chief executive, struck an optimistic tone with analysts regardless, speaking at length about Disney’s ambitions for its own rival to Netflix, after sealing a blockbuster acquisition of 21st Century Fox assets.
Hyundai climbs on reports of renewed restructuring push. Shares in Hyundai Motor – South Korea’s largest carmaker – rose 3 per cent on Wednesday morning following media reports that the company will again attempt a restructuring to improve its corporate governance.
According to the Chosun newspaper, the family that owns Hyundai Motor could sell a 10 per cent stake in Hyundai Glovis – the group’s shipping and logistics arm – in a move that could loosen the family’s control over the company.
In May, Hyundai Motor shelved a controversial restructuring plan after it came under fire from a handful of foreign investors, including activist hedge fund Elliott Management, who deemed it not beneficial to shareholders.
US finalises tariffs on $16bn of Chinese imports as trade war heats up. The US will start collecting tariffs on $16bn of Chinese imports on August 23, in the latest move in the escalating trade war between Washington and Beijing.
US trade officials released a final list of 279 products that make up the second tranche of the Trump administration’s new 25 per cent tariffs on Tuesday. It follows on from the first batch of tariffs on $34bn of imports that went into effect on July 6. Together, the first two tranches of tariffs on $50bn of Chinese imports mostly focus on China’s industrial sectors rather than consumer-focused products.
The latest tranche comes as President Donald Trump, who has suggested he could impose tariffs on all $500bn of the goods the US imports from China, continues hawkish rhetoric on trade despite promises by China to hit back in equal measure.