Stocks slide on Wall Street over new trade war concerns

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The tariff war between China and the US has stretched for over a year, squeezing businesses in many countries.

The communications services and energy sectors were the other big decliners, while the trade-sensitive Philadelphia Semiconductor index slipped 0.7%.

Growing optimism among investors that the USA and China were making progress toward a limited trade deal helped pave the way for gains in the market in recent weeks.

In a responding statement, the Chinese foreign ministry said: "China will take strong opposing measures, and the United States has to bear all the consequences".

Tariffs already put in place have hurt manufacturing around the world, and businesses have held back on spending given all the uncertainty about where the rules of global trade will end up.

-China trade deal could be pushed into next year, trade experts and people close to the White House said, as Beijing presses for more extensive tariff rollback, and the Trump administration counters with heightened demands of its own.

"We are standing with them [people of Hong Kong]", Republican Senator Marsha Blackburn said.

The S&P 500 index dropped 4.92 points, or 0.2 percent, to 3,103.54. It had earlier been up 0.3% and then down 0.1%.

The Nasdaq slid 43.93, or 0.5%, to 8,526.73. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks lost 7.65 points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,583.96.

The selling nudged the major US stock indexes off their recent all-time highs. Bond prices were little changed.

Recent data has pointed to a resilient USA economy, but recession fears are creeping back, with the gap between 2-year and 10-year Treasury yields at its narrowest in more than two weeks.

According to Heng, before the passage of the bill in the U.S. Senate, the CCP took a chance and amped up its handling of protestors, hoping that worldwide society would continue its appeasement attitude toward Beijing. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq are up by more than 24%, while the Dow is up almost 20%.

On Thursday, Nov. 21, Chinese Ministry of Commerce spokesman Gao Feng stated that Beijing is still collaborating with Washington over the trade deals, adding that Chinese authorities are committed to working toward an agreement. Doubts have persisted despite some encouraging remarks from the presidents of both nations.

Asked Wednesday about the status of the China deal, Trump told reporters in Texas "I don't think they're stepping up to the level that I want".

Optimism that Washington and Beijing were nearing a "phase one" trade deal helped pave the way for gains in the market in recent weeks, including a string of all-time highs for the major stock indexes. "The market needs a sense that there won't be an escalation in the trade war".

"If there is a phase one trade deal in the offing, it's nearly certainly going to be a deal largely on Beijing's terms; something that Beijing will want - purchases and promises, not a deal reckoning on the structural process", said Robert Daly, director of the Wilson Center's Kissinger Institute on China and the United States.

Traders welcomed a batch of deal-related news.

Retailers continued to report a mixed batch of earnings. It fell $1.84 to settle at $55.21 a barrel on Tuesday. Brent crude oil, the worldwide standard, declined 41 cents to $63.56 per barrel.

The December gold contract was down US$10.60 at US$1,463.60 an ounce and the December copper contract was down 2.6 cents at US$2.62 a pound. Natural gas rose 5 cents to $2.56 per 1,000 cubic feet.

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