Kudlow: Trump-Xi Mar-a-Lago Summit Coming

11 March, 2019, 10:26 | Author: Billie Castillo
  • Copper price: Chinese concentrate imports hit monthly record

Worries have grown about slowing global growth with the European Central Bank slashing its 2019 eurozone growth and inflation forecasts on Thursday, citing "uncertainties" around geopolitical risks and trade rows for the slowdown.

Asian stock markets and USA futures extended losses after the data.

But the U.S.is pushing China to accept as a condition of the deal a mechanism to allow Washington to regularly review Beijing's compliance with terms of the agreement and put tariffs back in place should it fail the verification. But the government has vowed it will not resort to massive stimulus like in the past, which helped revive demand worldwide. That turned out Friday from data from customs.

Both exports and imports should pick up somewhat later this year, said Wang Tao, chief China economist at UBS Group AG in Hong Kong.

Beijing and Washington have been locked in a bruising trade war since past year, imposing tit-for-tat tariffs on more than $360 billion in two-way trade, which has left global markets reeling.

Imports in unwrought copper were 352,000 tonnes, down 20 percent from January's 440,000, but the two-month total was 9.8 percent higher than the first two months of 2018.

Imports were expected to have dropped 1.4 per cent, after declining 1.5 per cent in the preceding month.

Kudlow told CNBC earlier on Friday that negotiations between US and Chinese officials have been progressing via video-conference and telephone since the last round of face-to-face talks in Washington two weeks ago, when Trump indefinitely extended a tariff truce.

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Crude oil imports stood at 39.22 million tons, or 10.23 million bpd, which was a 21.6-percent increase on the year and the fourth consecutive month of an import rate above 10 million tons.

US President Donald Trump-who last month said he expected to hold a summit with President Xi Jinping in March-said Thursday the trade talks were "moving along pretty well".

Trump postponed a sharp US tariff hike slated for early March as the talks progressed, but both Washington and Beijing have kept previous duties in place.

While China runs the risk of Xi leaving a summit empty-handed if details are not nailed down, Branstad said that USA officials want there to be some flexibility.

A decline in imports indicates domestic demand is weakening. China's exports to all of its major markets fell across the board last month. During the talks Vice Premier Liu He and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer enjoyed take out food, he said. Many analysts expect a rocky first half before a flurry of stimulus measures start to stabilize activity around mid-year.

He also lowered the government's goal for economic growth to a range of 6 to 6.5 percent for 2019, down from about 6.5 percent past year.

While growing hopes of a deal have underpinned global markets in recent weeks, The Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday that Chinese officials would not commit to a presidential summit until the two countries have a firm deal in hand.

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