Morning Notes

29/06/2018 Argonaut Morning Note

U.S. stocks rose intraday as investors weighed uncertainty over trade policy and signs of softening economic momentum around the world. The Dow Jones rose 0.4%, to 24216, rebounding after major indexes had come under broad selling pressure Wednesday. The S&P 500 added 0.6% and the Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.5%. The U.S. government has recently taken a more aggressive stance toward China, imposing tariffs on its exports and suggesting it may impose new restrictions on Chinese investment. Some investors and analysts fear that escalating tensions could lead to restrictive trade policies across the world that dent global growth. Money managers are especially cautious because recent economic data coming from Europe and China have not met expectations, and data showed the U.S. economy grew at a 2% rate in the first quarter of year, slower than initially estimated. The US gold price fell 0.3% to 1248 US$/oz.

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28/06/2018 - Argonaut Morning Note

U.S. stocks turned lower Wednesday as highflying technology shares slumped. The Dow Jones dropped 0.7%, in the last half hour of trading. The S&P 500 edged down 0.9%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite fell 1%. Technology shares, which have helped keep major indexes afloat this year, dropped 0.9% in the S&P 500. That continues a slump from earlier this week when the sector tumbled on fears the White House could move to curb foreign investment in technology firms.  Investors have been weighing mixed signals this week from the U.S. and China about the future of their trading relationship, which some worry could hurt the outlook for growth. President Donald Trump suggested he would scrap plans for new restrictions on Chinese investment in U.S. technology and rely mainly on existing tools to guard against the purchase -- and theft -- of innovations vital to the U.S. economy. China's Ministry of Commerce on Wednesday said it is closely watching potential U.S. moves to restrict Chinese investment amid signs of intensifying trade tensions between the two countries. China's central bank separately guided the yuan to a six-month low against the U.S. dollar, sending the Chinese currency tumbling. The yuan's drop has accelerated since trade threats between China and the U.S. escalated in the middle of June. Energy stocks, meanwhile, were the best performers in the broad S&P 500, rising 1.4%. The US gold price fell 0.6% to 1251.60 US$/oz.

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27/06/2018 Argonaut Morning Note

U.S. stocks rose intraday, a day after some of their worst declines in months. The Nasdaq Composite rose 0.8%. The Dow Jones gained or 0.1% to 24283. The S&P 500 added 0.2%. Trade concerns have rattled markets recently, dragging down major indexes on Monday. The Trump administration has been laying the groundwork to prevent Chinese firms from gaining access to advanced U.S. technology, restricting both investment from and exports to China. Chinese President Xi Jinping recently remarked that his country would "punch back" against trade restrictions, further spooking investors already fearful of the prospect of a full-blown global trade war. White House adviser Peter Navarro tried to calm investors amid a selloff Monday, saying on CNBC that investment restrictions were aimed at China and not other countries. Analysts said that these comments helped assuage some fears of an all-out trade war. The US gold price fell 0.5% to 1258.60 US$/oz.

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26/06/2018 Argonaut Morning Note

U.S. stocks tumbled, heading for their biggest one-day slide in months, as fresh escalations in the global trade conflict sent investors fleeing from some of the market's most-beloved technology firms. Fresh jabs between the White House and China exacerbated investor fears about a full-blown trade war. President Donald Trump is moving to bar Chinese companies from investing in U.S. tech firms and block additional tech exports to the country, in his latest effort to pressure Beijing. Chinese President Xi Jinping told a group of multinational chief executives that Beijing would "punch back." The blue-chip index fell as much as 446 points The Dow was recently down 1.3%. The S&P 500 dropped 1.4%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite fell 2.1%. Monday's selling entangled a sector of the stock market that had been relatively resilient to the rise in trade tensions over recent months. Technology stocks have been a standout in the S&P 500 this year, rising 9.5% compared with the S&P 500's 1.5% gain. Companies like Twitter, Nvidia and consumer-discretionary firm Amazon.com have surged more than 40% apiece as investor’s funnelled money into firms upending everything from communication to brick-and-mortar retail. Technology companies in the S&P 500 pull in about 59% of their revenues from overseas, giving them the highest foreign exposure of the broad index's 11 sectors, according to FactSet and BofA Merrill Lynch data. The US gold price decreased 0.3% to 1,265.10 US$/oz.

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25/06/2018 Argonaut Morning Note

The Dow industrials rose 119.19 points, or 0.5%, to 24581 Friday but slid 509.59 points, or 2%, for the week. The S&P 500 added 5 points, or 0.2% to 2755 and fell 24.78 points, or 0.9% for the week, while the Nasdaq Composite edged down 20.13 points, or 0.3%, to 7692.82 and lost 53.56 points, or 0.7%, for the week. Stocks got a boost Friday from energy shares, although they weren't enough to offset broad declines throughout the week from other sectors. Dow component Chevron rose $2.51, or 2%, to $125.10 and Exxon Mobil added $1.69, or 2.1%, to $81.38 after members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries agreed to a deal to join other big producers in boosting oil production by about 600,000 barrels a day. The move came as a relief to investors who had been expecting the cartel to decide to boost output even further, sending U.S. crude for August delivery up 4.6% to $68.58 a barrel -- its biggest one-day percentage gain since 2016. Industrial shares in the S&P 500 rose Friday but posted weekly declines, with Caterpillar down $10.08, or 6.7%, to $139.94 for the week and Boeing losing $18.97, 5.3%, to $338.91 over five sessions. The US gold price gained 0.2% to 1268.90 US$/oz.

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