Global stocks weighed by Apple demand woes, trade tensions

By April Joyner NEW YORK (Reuters) - World stocks fell on Monday as worries about softening demand for the iPhone dragged down shares of Apple Inc and persistent trade tensions between China and the United States sapped investor sentiment. Concerns about slowing economic growth also pushed down the dollar

Reuters November 20, 2018 01:05:32 IST
Global stocks weighed by Apple demand woes, trade tensions

Global stocks weighed by Apple demand woes trade tensions

By April Joyner

NEW YORK (Reuters) - World stocks fell on Monday as worries about softening demand for the iPhone dragged down shares of Apple Inc and persistent trade tensions between China and the United States sapped investor sentiment.

Concerns about slowing economic growth also pushed down the dollar.

The U.S. benchmark S&P 500 stock index opened lower as shares of Apple and its suppliers fell. The Wall Street Journal reported Apple had cut production orders in recent weeks for the iPhone models it launched in September.

Renewed tensions between China and the United States also weighed. At an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperative meeting in Papua New Guinea over the weekend, the issue prevented leaders from agreeing on a communique, the first time such an impasse had occurred in the group's history.

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said in a blunt speech on Saturday that there would be no end to U.S. tariffs on $250 billion of Chinese goods until China changed its ways.

"There's a back and forth with China seemingly on a daily basis," said Brent Schutte, chief investment strategist of Northwestern Mutual Wealth Management Company. "That seems to drive trading."

The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> fell 335.06 points, or 1.32 percent, to 25,078.16, the S&P 500 <.SPX> lost 36.12 points, or 1.32 percent, to 2,700.15 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> dropped 164.83 points, or 2.27 percent, to 7,083.04.

MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe <.MIWD00000PUS> shed 0.74 percent.

The Federal Reserve's course of rate hikes in the face of a potential economic slowdown has also weighed on markets, Schutte said.

Federal Reserve policymakers are still signalling rate increases ahead but have recently raised concern about a potential global slowdown, leading some market watchers to suspect the tightening cycle may not have much further to run.

On Monday, Goldman Sachs said that it expected the pace of U.S. economic growth to slow towards the global average next year.

Data released on Monday by the National Association of Home Builders showed weakening sentiment in the U.S. housing market, adding to concerns over economic growth.

Reflecting growth concerns and the possibility that the Fed's tightening cycle may soon end, the dollar dropped to a two-week low on Monday. The dollar index <.DXY> fell 0.25 percent.

In similar fashion, the 10-year U.S. Treasury yield has fallen from a recent top of 3.25 percent. Benchmark 10-year notes last rose 1/32 in price to yield 3.0701 percent, from 3.074 percent late on Friday.

In Europe, Renault SA shares helped push the STOXX 0.7 lower as Carlos Ghosn, the joint chairman of Renault and Nissan Motor Co <7201.T>, was arrested for alleged financial misconduct.

In commodity markets, gold found support from the drop in the dollar and added 0.1 percent to $1,222.76 an ounce.

Oil prices gave up earlier gains as investors mulled the effectiveness of a potential cut in supply from OPEC and other exporters.

Brent crude was down 70 cents a barrel at $66.06. U.S. crude futures traded 15 cents lower at $56.31 a barrel.

(Reporting by April Joyner; Additional reporting by Marc Jones in London; Editing by Peter Graff and Nick Zieminski)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

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