The sell-off was triggered by Donald Trump’s suggestions that the US-China trade war may not be resolved soon. (AP: Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
The Australian share market is headed for another day of major losses after US President Donald Trump said he was in no hurry to sign a trade deal with China by the end of next week.
Mr Trump said a trade agreement with China might have to wait until after the US presidential election in November 2020, denting investors’ hopes that the two largest economies would soon reach an initial deal to ease their damaging trade war.
“I have no deadline, no,” the President told reporters in London, where he was due to attend a meeting of NATO leaders.
“In some ways, I like the idea of waiting until after the election for the China deal.
“But they want to make a deal now, and we’ll see whether or not the deal’s going to be right. It’s got to be right.”
Massive falls continue
His remarks sent global stock prices tumbling for a second straight day and triggered a rush into “safe” assets, including gold and US government bonds.
Investors were betting that Washington and Beijing would sign a “phase one” deal before December 15, when the next round of US tariffs were due to be imposed on Chinese goods.
ASX futures were down 62 points or 0.9 per cent by 7:25am (AEDT), indicating a sharp fall in early trade for the local market.
On Wall Street, the Dow Jones index had sunk 347 points, or 1.3 per cent, to 27,437 and was on track to post its steepest loss in two months.
The S&P 500 and Nasdaq indices fell by 0.6 per cent each.
European markets closed mixed with London’s FTSE dropping 1.8 per cent, but Germany’s DAX lifting by a slight 0.2 per cent.
The Australian dollar, meanwhile, has lifted further to 68.4 US cents.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics is set to release its September quarter GDP figures at 11:30am (AEDT), providing an update on the nation’s economic health.
Reuters-polled economists are expecting Australia’s economy to have expanded by 0.5 per cent during the quarter, taking yearly growth up to a lacklustre 1.7 per cent.