| BY ALLANM DELIMOTAKU | STOCK MARKET NEWS TODAY |
Major U.S. stock indexes fell Tuesday, as investors assessed the potential fallout from the Trump administration’s threat to impose new tariffs on European imports. The Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 195 points, or 0.7%, to 26142, as shares of Boeing led nearly all 30 components lower in early trading. The S&P 500 fell 0.6%, while the Nasdaq Composite slid 0.3%.
The Trump administration on Monday released a list of some $11 billion worth of European goods it was considered putting tariffs on, including bicycles, kitchens and civil aviation products like the Airbus aircraft, ratcheting up trade tensions between Brussels and Washington.
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said the Trump administration would wait for World Trade Organization clearance to implement the duties. The tariff move followed several weeks of reports that the Trump administration was on the verge of completing a trade deal with China after a year of mutual import levies and frosty rhetoric.
While the threat of $11 billion in tariffs is minor compared with the duties the Trump administration initially threatened against China last spring, the impact of trade disputes on the global economy is likely to continue, said Marie Owens Thomsen, chief economist at Indosuez Wealth Management.
After the Democratic Party won control of the House of Representatives in November’s midterm elections, “The president feels he has few degrees of freedom left—trade and foreign policy are two of them and they’ll continue to dominate policy,” Ms. Owens Thomsen said.
Losses for U.S. stocks Tuesday come against a backdrop of continuing strength for U.S. equities so far this year, with gains in 2019’s second quarter so far extending those of the year’s first three months amid investor bets on gentle economic growth this year. The S&P 500 has climbed 2% in April and more than 15% in 2019.
Still, corporate earnings season, which begins in earnest later this week, will be closely examined for signs of weakness.
Investors were awaiting the International Monetary Fund’s latest world economic outlook, due to be released later Tuesday. In its January report, the IMF predicted a sharp slowdown in global growth. Minutes from the Federal Reserve’s most recent meeting are expected Wednesday. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 rose 0.2% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index climbed 0.3%.