Dow drops more than 550 points as trade war fears rattle stocks

Wall Street posts 3rd day of gains as trade fears ease

United States stocks traded sharply lower on Friday, with the Dow tumbling over 600 points, as escalating trade tensions between China and the U.S. weighed on the market.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended down 572.26 points (2.34 per cent) at 23,932.76 after sinking more than three per cent earlier. The S&P 500 index rose 32.57 points, or 1.3 percent, to 2,614.45.

Over the course of the day 9,408 shares traded hands, as compared to an average volume of 3,770 over the last 30 days for Horizons S&P 500 Covered Call ETF (NYSEARCA:HSPX).

Only two of the most active USA stocks premarket were higher.

The Nasdaq fell 161.44 (-2.28 percent) to close at 6,915.11, while the S&P 500 finished trading at 2,604.47, down 58.37 (-2.19 percent) for the day.

Tech helped lead the move higher, with Facebook jumping 2.7 percent and gains of more than 1.5 percent in Netflix and Amazon.

The fluctuations followed an announcement by President Trump Thursday that he was considering $100 billion in tariffs on Chinese exports on top of what he had already imposed. JPMorgan Chase gained $1.79, or 1.6 percent, to $112.22 and Citigroup added $1.16, or 1.7 percent, to $70.47.




Economic data on Thursday showed the USA trade deficit increased to a near 9-1/2-year high in February, but the shortfall with China narrowed sharply.

The Dow again traded in a broad range, rising as much as 358 points in morning trading before giving up most of those gains.

The June gold contract was up $2.40 to $1,339.70 an ounce and the May copper contract was down six cents to $3.00 a pound. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks dipped 29 points, or 1.9 percent, to 1,513. The Nasdaq composite advanced 0.5 percent to 7,076.55.

The market had been interpreting Trump's proposed tariffs as negotiating tactics meant to extract concessions out of China rather than a rigid position.

Industrial companies were especially hard hit by the escalation in trade tensions Friday.

Also, the March non-farm payrolls report showed the US adding 103K jobs, missing headline expectations by a wide margin.

Benchmark U.S. crude dropped $1.17, or 1.8 percent, to $62.37 a barrel in NY while Brent crude, used to price global oils, lost 92 cents, or 1.3 percent, to $67.41 per barrel in London.

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