Markets rattled again by trade war fears after Chinese retaliation

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As the USA and China begin battling each other with import tariffs, investors fearing a trade war are causing global market volatility.

Stocks around the world have plunged as investors feared that a trade conflict between the United States and China would escalate.

Chinese shares fell sharply after Beijing unveiled plans for tariffs on up to $3 billion of US imports in retaliation for USA duties on steel and aluminium products from China and other countries that went into effect on Friday.

By imposing tariffs on $60 billion worth of Chinese goods and identifying China as an "economic enemy", Trump has indeed set in motion a potential trade war.

China urged the United States to "pull back from the brink", while its embassy in Washington vowed Beijing would "fight to the end" in any trade war with the United States.

Soybean futures for May delivery fell as much as 2 percent to $10.0925 a bushel on the Chicago Board of Trade, the lowest for the contract since February 12. South Korean stocks fell 3.2 percent.

Geoffrey Yu, the head of the United Kingdom investment office of UBS Wealth Management, said: "We see China's retaliatory tariffs as relatively measured".

U.S. stocks sank in trading on Friday afternoon, pushing the S&P 500 to its biggest weekly decline in two years amid concerns about USA trade policy and retaliation from China. The S&P was down 5.95% this week, while the 30-member Dow lost 5.67% and entered correction territory. "If the USA imposes tariffs on China like that, I think there would be some damage on us in the long term as well".

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For the short-term, analysts expect soured sentiment for equity markets, though many saw a limited impact.

The US will impose 25% duties on targeted Chinese products to compensate for the harm caused to the American economy from China's policies, according to a fact sheet released by USTR.

Commodities did not fare well, either. Shares of Deutsche Bank, which retained an 80 percent stake in DWS, then fell more than 4 percent before recovering slightly. "China does not want a trade war with anyone". It was the 10-year note's biggest fall in yield since September 2017.

If a trade war does erupt, both sides are likely to share the blame.

Oil futures rallied. Benchmark U.S. crude rose 95 cents to $65.27 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. With regard to the steel and aluminium tariffs, the U.S. president has given the European Union, along with Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Mexico and South Korea, a temporary exemption until 1 May, while talks continue.

The dollar eased against a basket of currencies on Friday as trade concerns triggered a bout of investor risk aversion.

He says nuclear option would be to sell a "couple hundred billion" in US Treasuries, which would tank markets and raise US interest rates. Bolton, who served as USA ambassador to the United Nations, was also a Fox News contributor until his appointment last night. China's Commerce Ministry said the U.S. had set a "very bad precedent" while the Foreign Ministry called the U.S. to make "rational and prudent decisions".

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