The U.S. and China sent dissonant signals on trade, as President Trump struck a hopeful note and Beijing threatened retaliation if Washington hikes tariffs Friday. Just don’t bet on a deal getting done before then, warned Goldman Sachs, putting the chances of higher tariffs at at 60%. JPMorgan’s Jamie Dimon sees a deal coming, just not by Friday.
Turning Up The Heat
Trump banned trade in Iranian iron, steel, aluminum and copper, ratcheting up tensions hours after Tehran threatened to start enriching uranium again unless Europe throws it an economic lifeline. ( Here’s what its ultimatum means.) As for the oil business sanctions have cost it? Saudi Arabia plans to meet all orders for oil purchases it’s gotten for June—including from countries that had to stop buying Iranian crude, a person familiar said.
Now isn’t the time to “go wobbly” on national security, U.S. Secretary of State Michael Pompeo said in London, admonishing a key ally on China and Iran in a broadside against the U.K.’s approach national security. He risked an unflattering and undiplomatic comparison when he asked leaders to consider what Margaret Thatcher would do and urged them to hurry up and deliver Brexit.
Unloved $5.9 Billion Market
It’s been a long time coming, but bonds of debt-ridden borrowing units set up by China’s local governments are finally winning the hearts of international investors. Global investor participation in dollar bonds of local government financing vehicles has increased in recent months, spurred by greater familiarity with the asset class, according to Standard Chartered Plc, one of the top bond underwriters in Asia ex-Japan. The growing issuance of these high-yielding securities means if one wants to beat the regional bond benchmarks, they cannot ignore them, said Alan Roch, its head of Asia bond syndicate.
Singapore’s Stock Gems
Singapore’s market may be shrinking, but one award-winning stock analyst says there are still plenty of hidden jewels. Jarick Seet, ranked Singapore’s top researcher of small-cap shares by Asiamoney Brokers Poll every year since 2015, published a list this week that highlights 20 of the country’s most promising smaller firms. As if to prove his point, nine of the companies he selected are as yet uncovered by his team at RHB Securities Singapore Pte.