Oil prices tumbled by more than 2 percent on Monday after U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday said he would sharply hike tariffs on Chinese goods this week, risking derailing months of trade talks between the world's two biggest economies.
The administration has repeatedly suggested that the negotiators are making progress.
Investors pulled back from riskier bets on fears the trade battle between the world's biggest economies was escalating, especially since recent gains in USA equities were at least partly due to optimism they would reach a deal. Chinese officials are expected to come to Washington for trade talks on Wednesday. The White House has ramped up pressure to reach a deal, warning it could still walk away from the months-long negotiations.
Trump and the Chinese president will decide after the negotiations this week whether they'll meet to sign off on a pact, White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Thursday, adding that the US sees such a meeting as likely.
Trump asserted that so far the tariffs he slapped on Chinese goods "are partially responsible" for the robust U.S. economy, which in the first quarter grew at an annual rate of 3.2 percent.
Trump, however, warned that although talks were continuing, they were progressing too slowly as Beijing tries to renegotiate.
"For 10 months, China has been paying Tariffs to the United States of America of 25% on 50 Billion Dollars of High Tech, and 10% on 200 Billion Dollars of other goods", Trump tweeted.
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The most obvious successors are Ajit Jain , head of Berkshire's insurance operations, and Greg Abel , who heads its energy arm. A year ago he dumped the last of his stake in IBM, blaming some of the troubles at the company on Amazon .
The Trump administration says it has seen promises and commitments ignored in the past, so this time it will not sign a deal unless it features measures that will allow Washington to verify that China is keeping its word.
Prospects looked positive after the 10th round of trade talks in Beijing concluded on May 1, after White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement: "Today, Ambassador Lighthizer and Secretary Mnuchin concluded productive meetings with China's Vice Premier Liu He".
"The 10 per cent will go up to 25 per cent on Friday".
The president, a self-described "tariff man" who believes the trade imbalance can be whittled down with the use of import duties, explicitly linked USA growth to the imposition of Chinese tariffs.
The two sides have imposed tariffs on $360 billion in two-way trade since a year ago. "325 Billions Dollars of additional goods sent to us by China, but will be shortly, at a rate of 25%".
"I take the president's tweet at face value".
"More likely, in our view, is that this renewed threat is an attempt to extract a few more minor concessions in the final days of talks", he said. "I was disappointed that Larry Kudlow downgraded it to a mere warning, which may tend to undermine American credibility as the Chinese delegation prepares its position" ahead of this week's scheduled talks, he said.