Trump defends proposed United States tariffs on China

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He said that improper trade practices by China and the theft of intellectual property had harmed the USA economy.

The AAFA, which represents more than 1,000 footwear, apparel and accessories brands and retailers on Capital Hill, also condemned Washington's latest proposed levies on China imports as "far from appropriate".

Mike Terwilliger, portfolio manager of Resource Liquid Alternatives for the Resource Credit Income Fund, said almost every news event seems to register on the market's Richter scale, though the market has been dealing with some relatively weighty challenges this year.

Oxford Economics Ltd said that a full-blown trade war would have damaging consequences. "We're not quite sure what the long-term strategy is".

At the end of the trading session on Friday, the Dow Jones benchmark, a 30-stock index used as an indicator of market performance, was down 572 points, a drop of 2.3 percent.

Brent crude dropped 2.8 percent in the week while USA crude fell 4.4 percent, the biggest weekly decline since early February.

President Donald Trump on Thursday night threatened another escalation in a rapidly escalating trade battle with China, which then vowed to retaliate.

Mr Trump, in light of what he called China's "unfair retaliation" against earlier United States trade actions, had upped the ante on Friday (Thursday local time) by ordering U.S. officials to identify extra tariffs, escalating a tit-for-tat confrontation with potentially damaging consequences for the world's two biggest economies. The first round of $50 billion in tariffs mostly targeted industrial goods and electronic components.

Some analysts have speculated the two countries could reach a detente before the tariffs on both sides take effect.

The Dow average, which contains numerous multinational companies including industrial powerhouses Boeing and Caterpillar, swung dramatically this week, with nearly 1,300 points separating its lowest point Monday afternoon from its high late Thursday. France's CAC-40 was 0.2 percent lower at 5,267. "This is business", Navarro said. The administration hasn't said when any of the proposed tariffs would go into force.

Trump administration officials have said the USA may not ultimately impose tariffs on China, with White House chief economic adviser Larry Kudlow saying Wednesday that the president wants to solve the trade dispute with the "least amount of pain". Trump says China's trade practices have caused American factories to close and lead to the loss of American jobs.

"It is obvious that this stand-off between the United States (and) China is quite serious and navigating these waters will be tricky for traders", JBC said in a note.

While the proposed tariff on American propane probably won't hurt USA companies as much as intended, Yuanta Securities predicts duties on oil will rattle investors.

Also positive for prices, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said that an arrangement under which Moscow cooperates with the OPEC oil group could become indefinite once a current deal to curb oil production expires at the end of the year.

The developments jolted global markets. Average hourly pay ticked up, climbing 2.7 percent compared with a year earlier. Silver edged up 1 cent to $16.36 an ounce.

The dollar fell to 106.85 yen from 107.12 yen.

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