By Marketwatch and Associated Press
Asian markets were mixed in early trading Friday, after China threatened to retaliate if the Trump administration goes ahead with its latest tariff threats, yet still held out hopes for a trade deal.
Beijing will take unspecified “necessary countermeasures,” China’s Cabinet said in a one-sentence statement. It gave no details or any indication plans for trade talks in Washington in September might be affected.
President Donald Trump has said he plans to impose 10% tariffs on an additional $300 billion of Chinese imports starting Sept. 1, extending penalties to almost everything the United States buys from China. The Chinese announcement made no mention of Trump’s decision Wednesday to postpone penalties on about 60% of those goods until Dec. 15.
Still, officials from China’s foreign ministry later said they hope a trade deal will still be worked out, and said Trump and President Xi Jinping have remained in contact.
Meanwhile, investors were keeping an eye on U.S. bonds. The the 30-year Treasury yield /zigman2/quotes/211347052/realtime BX:TMUBMUSD30Y -0.34% fell to an all-time low Thursday, while the yield on the benchmark 10-year note /zigman2/quotes/211347051/realtime BX:TMUBMUSD10Y -1.52% hit a three-year low.
Japan’s Nikkei /zigman2/quotes/210597971/delayed JP:NIK +2.16% recovered from an early dip and was last about flat, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index /zigman2/quotes/210598030/delayed HK:HSI +1.13% advanced 0.5%. The Shanghai Composite /zigman2/quotes/210598127/delayed CN:SHCOMP +1.86% gained 0.5% while the Shenzhen Composite /zigman2/quotes/210598015/delayed CN:399106 +3.22% rose 0.6%. South Korea’s Kospi /zigman2/quotes/210598069/delayed KR:180721 +1.72% fell 0.9%, while benchmark indexes in Taiwan /zigman2/quotes/210597977/delayed TW:Y9999 +1.14% , Singapore /zigman2/quotes/210597985/delayed SG:STI -0.28% and Indonesia /zigman2/quotes/210597981/delayed ID:JAKIDX +0.25% were mixed. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 /zigman2/quotes/210598100/delayed AU:XJO +1.10% slipped 0.1%.
Among individual stocks, Screen Holdings /zigman2/quotes/200599327/delayed JP:7735 +2.47% and Inpex /zigman2/quotes/206689846/delayed JP:1605 +6.00% rose in Tokyo trading, while robotics maker Fanuc /zigman2/quotes/202054799/delayed JP:6954 +3.40% fell. In Hong Kong, Ping An Insurance /zigman2/quotes/210315058/delayed HK:2318 +1.19% and New World Development /zigman2/quotes/202357413/delayed HK:17 -1.60% gained, while Tencent /zigman2/quotes/204605823/delayed HK:700 +0.91% slipped. SK Hynix /zigman2/quotes/206420319/delayed KR:000660 +0.12% and LG Electronics /zigman2/quotes/209966407/delayed KR:066570 +0.88% declined in South Korea, and Foxconn /zigman2/quotes/204111604/delayed TW:2354 +1.58% advanced in Taiwan. In Australia, Oil Search /zigman2/quotes/200513631/delayed AU:BPT +3.18% sank while Fortescue Metals /zigman2/quotes/202351558/delayed AU:FMG +3.70% jumped.
China’s central bank set the daily midpoint for the yuan at 7.0312 per U.S. dollar, the seventh consecutive session it’s been set weaker than the 7 level.