China slaps with retaliatory tariffs on $16 billion worth of US goods, exactly matching President Donald Trump’s latest escalation in the ongoing international trade war. The Chinese Ministry of Commerce declared a 25% levy on certain US goods, including coal, crude oil, automobiles, motorcycles and scrap metal. The move follows the US Trade Representative’s office published its final list on $16 billion in Chinese goods which will take effect on August 23. The 333 products being targeted by China include vehicles, various fuels on the list and fibre optical and motorcycles.
The Trump administration will impose sanctions on Russia for poisoning an ex-spy living in Britain with a chemical weapon, according to the State Department. Russia’s currency which was already facing its worst day against the US dollar dropped even further after sanctions were announced. On Wednesday, the Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had reportedly approved of “the US’ official determination that Russia violated a decades-old international law in its use of the poisonous chemical weapon.” Meanwhile, the New Zealand dollar fell on Thursday after the Reserve Bank of New Zealand stated it expected to keep the cash rates at a record low of 1.75% for another two years.
The price of major cryptocurrencies continues to fall on Thursday following news that the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) delayed a decision on the listing of a Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF). Bitcoin was down 4.4% to $6,310 earlier today on the crypto market. The digital coin is expected to trade around a similar range through the rest of the day after having recorded huge sets of pullbacks in its previous session. Cryptocurrency prices are being dragged away from recent session highs.
The US West Texas Intermediate dropped as from $69.30 a barrel around 10:00 GMT on Wednesday and this was dragged by a huge set of pullbacks through $66.40 a barrel by the end of its session. However, the commodity is seen recovering from its record low level on Thursday amid escalating tensions between the world two biggest economies. The WTI around $67.07 earlier today, it could gain further through the day.
The Nasdaq Composite closed marginally higher on Wednesday’s session, botching its longest winning streak since March, after shares of Facebook and Amazon edged higher on the market. The Wall Street index gained less than 0.1% to close at 7,888.33 points – Nasdaq’s first seven-day winning streak since the one ended on March 12. It is expected to maintain this bullish trend today.
The Sterling value has fallen against the Japanese yen following continuing worries that Britain will leave the EU without a trade deal. The GBP/JPY pair looks all but broken at this point as fears continue to weigh upon Sterling. The GBP/JPY pair however, is getting some support down at 142.50 yen as it started picking momentum on the forex market. It is expected to move towards the 143 level through the day.
US Producer Price Index (PPI) for July is due at 12:30 GMT.
Japan’s reports its second-quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at 23:50 GMT.