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Asian stocks decline as Trump again threatens to raise tariffs on Chinese goods

By Yana Berman

US president’s warning weakens hope of ending the US-China trade war soon

Asian stocks took a dip on Wednesday November 20, as US president Donald Trump warned he could impose higher tariffs on Chinese goods.

According to CNBC, the president made a comment during a Cabinet meeting. “If we don’t make a deal with China, I’ll just raise the tariffs even higher,” he said.

The Chinese markets were shaky following the statement, ending the day lower. The Shanghai composite was down 0.78 per cent, while the Shenzhen component and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index lost 0.82 per cent and 0.83 per cent respectively.

Also on Wednesday, the People’s Bank of China revealed that it had cut one-year and five-year loan prime rates to 4.15 per cent and 4.8 per cent, respectively. That represents a 0.05 per cent cut in comparison to the previous month.

As for other Asian stocks, Japan’s Nikkei 225 lost 0.62 per cent during the day, while Topix 500 index went down 0.30 per cent. South Korean Kospi shed 1.3 per cent and Australian S&P/ASX 200 lost 1.35 per cent.

Beijing and Washington reportedly held a “constructive” phone call on November 17, discussing phase one of the future trade deal. Investors are now cautiously optimistic that phase one will be complete by Christmas.

FURTHER READING: Gold prices ease amid optimism over US-China trade deal

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