Markets Update: Global trade tensions take their toll

Business, Markets | Mon 13 May | Author – Business & Finance

Equities fall as Trump trade tariff tensions weigh on the markets, writes Ian Slattery.

ian slattery zurich

Ian Slattery

Markets fell last week, marking one of the worst weekly performances since the lows of December last year, as the VIX index hit its highest level since January.

Investor sentiment was knocked as the US administration imposed further tariffs on China. As of Friday morning tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods moved from 10% to 25%. China vowed to retaliate but did not immediately specify their plans.

Tensions between the US and Iran are also on the rise as the US deployed warships in the Arabian Gulf.

Uber undertook its initial public offering (IPO) on Friday which valued the company at approximately $75 billion (the biggest since 2014), although the stock price fell over the course of the day. Treasury yields fell over the course of the week even as a 10 year note auction was met with the lowest investor demand since 2009.


The MSCI World fell by over 2%, in both local and euro terms, being led lower by Asian stocks. The influential US market was down 2.5% in euro terms, with all major markets finishing the week in negative territory.

Fixed Income & FX

The US 10-year yield ticked lower during the week, moving to 2.47% from 2.53%.The German equivalent moved back into negative territory to close at -0.05%.

The Euro US Dollar exchange rate closed the week at 1.12, whilst Euro/GBP was at 0.86


Oil finished the week lower at just below $61 per barrel. And gold and copper prices finished the week at $1,286 per troy ounce and $6,108 per tonne respectively on the back of heightened trade tension concerns.


Tuesday 14th May

UK unemployment goes to print and is expected to remain steady at 3.9%.

Wednesday 15th May

Eurozone GDP figures and US Retail Sales are both released.

Friday 17th May

Eurozone inflation figures for April are forecast to come in at 0.7% (MoM).

The team at Zurich Investments is a long established and highly experienced team of investment managers who manage approximately €24bn in investments of which pension assets amount to €10.7bn. Find out more about Zurich Life’s funds and investments here.

w: t: @ZurichLife

Warning: Past performance is not a reliable guide to future performance. Benefits may be affected by changes in currency exchange rates. The value of your investment may go down as well as up. If you invest in these funds you may lose some or all of the money you invest.