DAILY MARKET REPORTS
- Stocks were pummeled by selling Monday, pushing indexes from New York to Shanghai lower, as the yuan reeled and fresh trade threats between Beijing and Washington raised fears of an economic slowdown.
- The Dow Jones fell 532 points, or 2%, to 25952. The S&P 500 shed 2.1% and the Nasdaq Composite declined 2.6%.
- Trump stunned financial markets last week by threatening to impose 10% tariffs on the remaining $300 billion of Chinese imports, abruptly abandoning a brief ceasefire.
- The Chinese yuan sank below 7 per dollar and hit an all-time low in offshore trading Monday, with local officials blaming the depreciation on President Trump’s decision last week to extend tariffs to almost all Chinese imports.
- Mr. Trump responded on Twitter, accusing China of engaging in currency manipulation.
- All of the 11 major S&P sector were in the red.
- Apple slid 4.1% as analysts expected the newly proposed tariffs to hurt demand for its flagship iPhone, while the Philadelphia chip index slipped 3.5%.
- More than three quarters of S&P 500 companies have reported results so far, with about 74% topping expectations for profit.
US FINANCIAL MARKET
Tyson Foods beats profit estimates, but sees no major benefits from China pig fever
- Tyson Foods said on Monday it has not yet reaped major financial gains from a swine disease that has killed millions of hogs in China and is expected to create a global shortfall in pork.
- Total sales rose 8.3% to $10.89 billion. Analysts on average had expected revenue of $11.05 billion.
- Net income rose to $676 million in the third quarter, from $541 million a year earlier.
- The company also disclosed it received a U.S. Department of Justice subpoena seeking additional information related to the chicken industry.
China Takes on Trump by Weakening Yuan, Halting Crop Imports
- China responded to President Donald Trump’s tariff threat with another escalation of the trade war, letting the yuan tumble to the weakest level in more than a decade and asking state-owned companies to suspend imports of U.S. agricultural products.
- The moves antagonized Trump, who used Twitter to accuse China of “currency manipulation” which “will greatly weaken China over time!” He has previously criticized Beijing for not keeping to promises to buy more U.S. crops.
- China’s crop imports from the U.S. are another weapon at Beijing’s disposal.
- The country’s state-run agricultural firms have now stopped buying American farm goods, and are waiting to see how trade talks progress, people familiar with the situation said, declining to be identified as they’re not authorized to speak to the media.
- Privately owned Chinese firms that had received retaliatory-tariff waivers on American soybeans from Beijing have also stopped buying the commodity due to uncertainty over trade relations, other people said. Corn and soybean futures fell on the news.
- Editorials in state-run newspapers suggested Xi will reject any deal that either retains punitive tariffs or forces China to make concessions on issues like state-run enterprises that could weaken the party’s grip on power.
China dismisses Trump agriculture purchase claim, says honoring pledges
- Beijing is honoring its pledges to buy U.S. agricultural products, state media cited China’s state planning body saying, dismissing an accusation from U.S. President Donald Trump that it had not met purchasing promises in the sector.
- Trump had said on Thursday that Beijing had not fulfilled a promise to buy large volumes of U.S. farm products and vowed to impose new tariffs on around $300 billion of Chinese goods, abruptly ending a truce in the Sino-U.S. trade war.
- The U.S. accusations that China did not buy U.S. agricultural products were “groundless,” state broadcaster CCTV on Monday reported an official from China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) as saying.
- China bought 130,000 tonnes of soybeans, 120,000 tonnes of sorghum, 60,000 tonnes of wheat, 40,000 tonnes of pork and products, and 25,000 tonnes of cotton from the United States between July 19 and Aug. 2, the official said.
- China is also honoring agreements signed earlier to import U.S. soybeans, the official said, noting that 2.27 million tonnes of U.S. soybeans had been loaded and shipped to China in July, since Trump met Xi Jinping in Osaka at the G20 summit in June.
Google to allow rival search engines to compete on Android – at a price
- Google will allow rivals to compete to be the default search engines on new Android devices in Europe, but they will have to pay for the privilege.
- The move comes a year after the European Commission fined the U.S. tech giant 4.34 billion euros ($4.81 billion) for blocking rivals by pre-installing its Chrome browser and search app on Android smartphones and notebooks.
- Google said in a blog post that users in Europe will, from early 2020, be able to pick a default search engine from four options, including Google, when they set up a new Android smartphone or tablet.
- Rival search engines can apply to join Google among the four options in separate auctions for each individual country.
Walmart’s Flipkart to add free movies, videos streaming to its app
- Walmart’s Indian unit Flipkart is set to roll out a free video service for all of its 160 million customers this month as the ecommerce company looks for new ways to increase its user base in smaller towns and cities, it said on Monday.
- Flipkart, based in the southern city of Bengaluru, said it would offer movies, short videos and web series on its app, but added it won’t venture into original content right now.
- Flipkart competes with Amazon.com’s Indian unit in the country.
- Unlike Amazon’s Prime video service, Flipkart won’t charge users for streaming and won’t launch a separate application for these services, the spokeswoman said.
IBM and other companies launch new blockchain network for supply management
- International Business Machines announced on Monday a new blockchain network aimed at improving manual and cumbersome supply chain management.
- The new blockchain network is called Trust Your Supplier and alongside IBM, the other founding participants were Anheuser-Busch InBev, Cisco, GlaxoSmithKline, Lenovo, Nokia, Schneider Electric and Vodafone.
- Technology research firm Gartner Inc said by 2023, blockchain will support the global movement and tracking of $2 trillion of goods and services annually.
Murdoch’s Fox Corp to buy fintech Credible Labs in $397 million deal
- U.S. broadcaster Fox on Monday agreed to buy Credible Labs in a deal valuing the online finance broker at $397 million, as the Murdoch-controlled firm hunts for growth following the sale of its film and TV assets to Disney.
- In a challenging media landscape, Credible Labs, listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, gives Fox exposure to an online service that matches personal borrowers and lenders seeking to service the $1.6 trillion a year U.S. mortgage market.
- Credible’s online platform provides credit checks to borrowers seeking mortgages and student and personal loans, and uses that information to show them pre-qualified loan rates and refinancing options that they can click through to obtain.
Drug industry urges Canada to act early on U.S. import plan
- Canada’s main pharmaceutical lobby group has urged the government not to wait for drug shortages before responding to U.S. plans to import Canadian drugs, according to documents seen by Reuters.
- The talking points were prepared last month by Innovative Medicines Canada (IMC) for its staff and member companies, before the Trump administration announced on Wednesday that it would allow U.S. states and other groups to start pilot programs importing cheap drugs from Canada in an effort to lower drug costs.
- In one early version of its talking points, the IMC proposed the Canadian government ban all drug exports “unless otherwise permitted by regulation.”
- The lobby group’s efforts so far suggest industry is eager to derail the Trump administration’s plan. IMC’s members include major drug companies based in the United States and abroad, and large-scale shipments of cheap drugs from Canada could lower their profits.
Wells Fargo boosts estimate for possible legal reserve shortfall to $3.9 billion
- Wells Fargo said on Friday that it boosted its estimate for a possible legal reserve shortfall to $3.9 billion for the quarter, from $3.1 billion earlier this year, according to a regulatory filing.
- The bank said that the increase was due to “a variety of matters, including retail sales practices matters.”
US ECONOMY & POLITICS
Trump Ordered New Chinese Tariffs Over Objections of Advisers
- President Trump overruled advisers to ramp up tariffs on China after a heated exchange in which he insisted levies were the best way to make Beijing comply with U.S. demands, according to people familiar with the matter.
- Barring a break in the impasse, the U.S. is now poised to impose 10% tariffs on roughly $300 billion in Chinese imports that aren’t currently taxed starting Sept. 1.
- Battle lines are hardening in Beijing as well—raising prospects that a deal may be put off until after the U.S. presidential election next year.
- The president said his patience had worn thin and stood by his argument that tariffs were the best form of leverage.
- Despite the deterioration in talks, Mr. Trump signaled confidence in the U.S. position from his New Jersey golf resort on Saturday. “Things are going along very well with China,” he said on Twitter.
U.S. Services Join Factories with Slowest Growth Since 2016
- A gauge of service industries declined in July to an almost three-year low as orders continued to cool, indicating a sluggish start to the third quarter for the biggest part of the economy.
- The non-manufacturing index fell to 53.7, the weakest since August 2016 and well below the median forecast of economists, data from the Institute for Supply Management showed Monday.
- Among other categories in the ISM’s non-manufacturing report, a measure of inventories suffered the biggest decline since December.
Mass Shootings in El Paso, Dayton Leave 29 Dead
- Two mass shootings in less than 24 hours left at least 29 dead and 53 injured, and the events shook a nation that seemed to have grown accustomed to the toll of gunfire in public places.
- In El Paso, Texas, a lone gunman walked into a Walmart Saturday morning, shooting with an AK-style semiautomatic rifle.
- Authorities were investigating the shooting, which killed 20 and injured 26 more, as a possible case of domestic terrorism and a hate crime because officials believe the suspect, a white man, was targeting Hispanics.
- Barely 13 hours later in Dayton, Ohio, in a downtown neighborhood crowded with bars and restaurants, a man wearing body armor and a mask opened fire with a .223-caliber semiautomatic rifle with a 100-round drum magazine.
- The gunman was killed by police about 30 seconds after he fired his first shot, police said. That rampage left 27 injured. Officials in Dayton haven’t provided a motive for that shooting.
Trump Suggests Combining Gun Background-Check Legislation with Immigration Reform
- President Trump called on Republican and Democratic lawmakers to come together to work on “strong background checks” after mass shootings over the weekend in Texas and Ohio, suggesting the effort could be coupled with “desperately needed immigration reform.”
- “We cannot let those killed in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, die in vain,” Mr. Trump tweeted Monday morning.
- The president previously expressed support for strengthening the federal background-check system for firearms after the 2018 shooting at a Parkland, Fla., high school.
- He has threatened to veto legislation passed this year by the Democratic House broadening background checks.
Trump, Britain’s Johnson discussed trade, security, 5G: White House
- U.S. President Donald Trump spoke with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson about trade, next-generation 5G mobile networks and global security, White House spokesman Hogan Gidley said in a statement on Friday.
- The United States is pressuring its allies, including Britain, to avoid using equipment from Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei in its 5G mobile networks. Washington says Huawei is a national security risk here
- Britain’s National Security Council, chaired by Johnson’s predecessor Theresa May, had decided in principle to give Huawei limited access to sensitive parts of the 5G network.
- But the council has yet to make a final decision, and Johnson is more publicly aligned with Trump than May was.
Two Fed Officials Say Economy Didn’t Justify Lowering Rates
- The two Federal Reserve officials who opposed Wednesday’s interest-rate cut by the central bank justified their views based on the current state of the economy, in separate statements Friday.
- Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren and Kansas City Fed President Esther George voted against their colleagues’ decision to lower their short-term borrowing rate by a quarter percentage point.
- Most of what the Fed rate cut was aimed at hasn’t yet brought actual difficulty to the economy, where growth is around its long-term trend, with good job creation and a historically low unemployment rate.
EUROPE & WORLD
SoftBank Corp first-quarter profit climbs 4% as mobile user numbers grow
- Japanese telco SoftBank said on Monday its operating profit in the quarter ended June rose 4%, in line with estimates, as the number of mobile users grew.
- Its smartphone subscribers rose 372,000 from three months earlier as SoftBank markets a plan targeting heavy data users.
- The company’s operating profit was 268.9 billion yen ($2.54 billion) in the first quarter, versus an estimate of 268 billion yen.
Huawei’s Phone Sales in China Get Patriotic Boost
- Huawei’s smartphone sales are surging in China as a patriotic buying spree helps to blunt the impact of widening U.S. restrictions on the telecommunications giant.
- Huawei’s share of smartphone sales in China soared by almost a third to a record 38% during the second quarter, while all of Huawei’s major rivals, including Apple and Xiaomi, lost ground in the period.
- The U.S. campaign has inspired an outpouring of support for Huawei from Chinese companies like Xinye Lubricating Oil in Puyang, Henan Province.
- The lubricant company posted on WeChat that it would award 500 yuan—about $72—to any employee who switches from an iPhone to a Huawei device, which cost an average $901 in the first quarter in China, according to Canalys.
- Around the same time, Days Hotel & Suites in Changsha offered a reward of 200 yuan to all employees using a Huawei phone.
HSBC to Slash Thousands of Jobs After Ousting CEO
- HSBC plans to slash thousands of jobs and slow investment spending after the surprise ouster of Chief Executive John Flint.
- Up to 2% of the bank’s 237,685 employees could lose their jobs, a bank executive said Monday, as HSBC flagged a worsening outlook for the global economy in its second-quarter results.
- HSBC said Mr. Flint had agreed to leave the CEO job after just 18 months, ending his three-decade career at the bank.
- HSBC posted $4.37 billion in net profit for the second quarter, up from $4.1 billion in the prior-year quarter, on higher revenue.
Hong Kong Crisis Escalates with Citywide Strike, Spreading Clashes
- A citywide strike and three days of violent clashes with police that spread through the city escalated a political crisis as Hong Kong’s leader called the situation dangerous and unstable but offered no compromises to abate the unrest.
- Unlike most of the demonstrations in the nearly two months of unrest, Monday’s took place on a weekday and sought to bring working life in the busy financial hub to a standstill.
- Protesters threw umbrellas at police, who then used tear gas to disperse the crowds.
Iran Seizes Vessel in Persian Gulf Accused of Smuggling Fuel
- Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps has seized a vessel accused of smuggling fuel and detained its crew, Iranian state television reported, in another case of Tehran interdicting ships in the volatile Persian Gulf.
- The report on Sunday said the Guard’s Navy patrol forces seized the vessel, along with 700,000 liters of smuggled fuel and, in coordination with Iranian judicial authorities, impounded it near Farsi Island in the Persian Gulf.
- The Iraqi Oil Ministry said it had no relation to the detained vessel. Spokesman Assem Jihad said the ministry was gathering information on the vessel, describing it as smaller than those that officially market its oil and products.
South Korea to spend $6.5 billion on R&D to cut reliance on Japanese imports
- South Korea on Monday announced plans to invest about 7.8 trillion won ($6.48 billion) in research and development for local materials, parts and equipment over the next seven years in an effort to cut the reliance on Japanese imports.
- The move comes after Japan on Friday dropped Korea from its “white list” of countries with fast-track export status, intensifying a row over wartime forced laborers.
- In July, Japan tightened controls on the export of materials used to make chips, South Korea’s top export item, which threatened to disrupt global semiconductor supplies used by tech giants such as Apple and Huawei.
TODAY in HISTORY
- The first electric traffic lights were installed in Cleveland, Ohio. (1914)
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