ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronEye IconIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailMenu BurgerPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon SearchSite TitleTitle ChevronIcon Twitter
Nikkei Markets

Asian stocks decline as fresh concerns surface over trade

US tariffs on Brazil and Argentina spark fears Trump may harden stance on China

HONG KONG (Nikkei Markets) -- Asian shares outside of Japan fell Tuesday after President Donald Trump imposed tariffs on two South American countries, prompting investors to reassess the outlook for an interim trade deal between the U.S. and China.

The Nikkei Asia300 Index slid 0.2% to 1,300.35.

The losses on the gauge came after the S&P 500 Index yesterday fell by the most in two months. Data that indicated contraction in U.S. manufacturing activity and renewed trade worries dimmed the appetite for risk assets.

Trump said on Twitter yesterday that he is restoring tariffs on all steel and aluminum shipments from Brazil and Argentina effective immediately. He accused both the countries of having presided "over a massive devaluation of their currencies."

In more negative trade news, the U.S. threatened tariffs on $2.4 billion of imports from France after concluding that the European nation's new digital services tax would harm U.S. technology companies, Reuters reported.

"The U.S. show of force on tariffs is as much a message to China as it is to the countries affected," ING Bank said in a note. "It says, tariffs are still a weapon we can use if you don't sign a deal."

The U.S. and China are attempting to reach a trade deal before a Dec. 15 deadline when more Chinese goods could be subject to tariffs, further worsening the ongoing trade war. U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross yesterday indicated that the U.S. could go ahead with the Dec. 15 tariffs if a trade deal is not reached by then.

Meanwhile, a closely watched U.S. manufacturing gauge indicated that factory activity in the world's largest activity continued to contract. The ISM Manufacturing Index posted a reading of 48.1 for November, down from 48.3 in the previous month.

Among movers on the A300 on Tuesday, Hong Kong-listed Chinese jewelry retailers Chow Tai Fook Jewellery Group and Luk Fook Holdings International dropped 2.2% and 2.8%, respectively. Data released on Monday showed Hong Kong's retail sales by value slumped 24.3% in October from a year ago. The drop came amid an ongoing political crisis in the city that has affected tourist arrivals and weighed on the retail sector.

Hyundai Motor ended little changed after its global sales volumes in November declined 2.8% from a year ago. Kia Motors added 0.8% following a 0.8% increase in sales.

China Vanke dropped 0.3%. The Chinese property developer reported a 6.5% year-on-year decline in November contracted sales.

--Nimesh Vora

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Get Unlimited access

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends October 31st

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to the Nikkei Asian Review has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media