With only hours left for the closely watched meeting between US President Donald Trump and Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping in Japan, initial reports coming from Osaka have not been quite favorable. The two world leaders will be meeting on the sidelines of the G20 Summit on Saturday.
Citing an unidentified White House official, Al Jazeera reported that today’s working lunch gave hints “that the two sides remain far apart.”
The official reportedly told journalists that the response from most of the world leaders were positive, while China had a more negative tone. Trump had earlier said that he expects the meeting to be productive, at the least.
Investors remained cautious on these unfavorable reports coming from Japan. Most Chinese stocks and ETFs were trading in red on Friday. The iShares China Large-Cap ETF was down 0.27%, while the SPDR S&P China ETF slipped 0.43% at 2 PM ET, even as the S&P 500 index gained 0.36%.
The Chinese stock slide was led by e-commerce major Alibaba (NYSE: BABA), which was down 1.40% and social media platform Weibo (NASDAQ: WB), which dipped 1.8%. Other stocks such as China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (NYSE: SNP), China Telecom Corp. (NYSE: CHA) and Nio (NYSE: NIO) were also trading lower on Friday.
The trade war had recently intensified after Trump bumped up the tariffs to 25% on $200 billion worth of Chinese commodities last month. China retaliated in a similar way on $60 billon of US imports, despite its own slowing economy.
The trade war has been battering US-listed Chinese stocks over the past two years, as investors remain hesitant on betting their money, despite some of them achieving operational excellence.