By James A. Loyola
Philippine stocks tumbled with other Asian markets after US shares fell on fresh trade war fears triggered by huge US tariffs slapped on Chinese imports and Beijing unveiled its own measures against US goods.
The main Philippine Stock Exchange lost most of the gains it made during last Thursday’s bounce, losing 153.65 points or 1.89 percent to close at 7.970.80 with all sectoral indices wallowing in the red.
A total of 2.55 billion shares worth R8.65 billion changed hands with losers beating gainers 143 to 65 with 39 stocks managing to hold their ground.
“All major regional indexes dropped broadly and volatility spiked as the Trump administration’s plans to announce new trade restraints against China renewed fears about a potential trade war that could dent economic growth,” said Regina Capital Development Corporation Managing Director Luis Limlingan.
He noted that, “global Flash PMI data also came in weaker than expected added to the selling pressure.”
US President Donald Trump announced levies on up to $60 billion of imports from China for what he describes as the “theft” of American intellectual property, fuelling speculation that a strong recovery in the world economy could be thrown off course.
The US president announced levies on up to $60 billion of imports from China for what he describes as the ”theft” of American intellectual property, fuelling speculation that a strong recovery in the world economy could be thrown off course.
China responded immediately by saying it was ”not afraid of a trade war”, while it also released a list of potential tariffs on $3 billion worth of US goods, from pork to fruits and wine.
Wall Street was sent spiralling by the news Thursday with all three main indexes shedding between 2.4 percent and 2.9 percent. And those losses filtered through to Asia. Tokyo was hammered 3.5 percent by the break, with exporters also hit by a surging yen, which is considered the go-to currency in times of turmoil and uncertainty.
This comes just weeks after the White House imposed stinging taxes on steel and aluminium products entering the US — causing equities to plunge — as Trump drives through with his America First protectionist agenda.