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Overnight Markets: Wall Street inches lower amid US-China trade spat

Overnight Markets: Wall Street inches lower amid US-China trade spat

US stocks mostly closed lower on Monday as gains in energy shares helped offset declines due to trade war concerns after China’s retaliation to US tariffs.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 130 points, or 0.52%, to 24,960, the S&P 500 lost eight points, or 0.29%, to 2,772 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped seven points, or 0.09%, to 7,740.

Tariffs imposed by the world's two biggest economies are set to take effect on 6 July, ratcheting up a trade dispute that has been simmering for months.

President Donald Trump has announced a 25% tariff on up to $50 billion of Chinese products. China is retaliating by raising import duties on $34 billion worth of American goods, including soybeans, electric cars and whiskey.

Boeing, which is the single largest US exporter to China, fell 0.8% as the biggest drag on the Dow. Construction equipment maker Caterpillar fell 0.7%.

Chipmakers also plunged as they mainly rely on China for a large portion of their revenue. The PHLX semiconductor index lost 0.99% and was on track for its worst daily performance in a month. Intel, which shed 3.6%, was the biggest drag on the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq on tariff concerns and a downgrade by Northland Securities.

Among other stocks, Valeant Pharmaceuticals’ US-listed shares tumbled 11.9% after the US health regulator declined to approval the company’s plaque psoriasis treatment lotion.

Biotechnology firm China Biologic surged 20.6% after Chinese investment company CITIC Capital Holdings offered to buy it in a deal valuing the company at $3.65 billion.

In the energy sector, Marathon Oil Corp. rose 1.7%, while Occidental Petroleum Corp. closed up 0.6% after oil prices rose in volatile trade ahead of this week’s OPEC meeting.

In Asia, stocks were mixed in on Tuesday in morning session after trade tensions between the US and China escalated further.

Japan's Nikkei 225 down 0.44%. South Korea's Kospi hovered around the flat line. Australian stocks tacked on 0.31%.

In Greater China, the Hang Seng Index declined 0.43%, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index declined 0.73%.


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