The collapse of the trade talks between the U.S. and China was the primary driver for stock market moves this week. Ongoing uncertainty over the Brexit negotiations was also a factor in market volatility as well as increased tensions in the Middle East.
Escalating tensions in the trade talks between the U.S. and China sent markets lower as President Trump threatened to enact a tariff increase on Chinese goods beginning Friday. When the U.S. followed through on its threat at midnight on Friday morning, stocks plunged as equity markets apparently had not been pricing in the fact that the deal could collapse so quickly.
The U.K. received a reprieve from the constant pressure of coming up with a viable Brexit package this week when the EU gave it until October 31 to come up with a new plan. Conditions on the extension, however, mean that the U.K. must elect members to the European Parliament in May, or it will again be faced with the threat of a disorderly exit come June 1.
Brexit continues to be the top news story affecting volatility in all markets, followed by further apparent progress in the U.S.-China trade talks. President Trump now appears to be taking aim on Mexico as the next target of his tariffs, despite an economic agreement between the two countries earlier this year that has yet to be ratified.
1. Economic data out of the U.S., China and Europe were primary factors for market volatility this week. The Non-Farm Payrolls report for February will be closely watched when it is released on Friday for further indication that the U.S. economy might be slowing. 2. The seasonally adjusted number of Americans filing initial claims for…