ASX sinks as Donald Trump threatens to impose tariffs on Brazil and Argentina metal imports

ASX sinks as Donald Trump threatens to impose tariffs on Brazil and Argentina metal imports

The Australian share market’s losses have accelerated in afternoon trade after US President Donald Trump decided to impose tariffs on metal imports from Brazil and Argentina. By 1:25pm (AEDT), the ASX 200 had fallen by a steep 138 points, or 2 per cent, to 6,724. Despite the heavy sell-off, the local market has essentially drifted back to where it was a week ago as the market has been trading near record highs. Every sector is trading sharply lower with technology, consumer staples and utilities being the worst performers — down between 2.2 and 3 per cent. Among the weakest stocks are Virgin Money UK (-5.4 per cent), WiseTech Global (-4.9 per cent) and Costa Group (-4.4 per cent). Only 12 stocks in the benchmark index are trading higher including Bluescope Steel (+0.5 per cent) and Pilbara Minerals (+0.9 per cent). Meanwhile, the Australian dollar jumped to 68.2 US cents, up about half a cent since early-Monday. This was due to some upbeat economic data from Beijing showing a surprise rebound in Chinese manufacturing activity. The Reserve Bank board will meet today but most economists are not expecting an interest rate cut at 2:30pm (AEDT). Mr Trump opened up a new front in his trade war by tweeting that he would reinstate tariffs, effective immediately, on all steel and aluminium shipped into the United States by the two South American nations. Brazil and Argentina were exempted from steel tariffs (25 per cent) and aluminium tariffs (10 per cent) last year […]

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