S&P 500 Financials Futures Market News and Commentary
The S&P 500 Index ($SPX) this morning is down -30.68 (-1.05%), the Dow Jones Industrials Index ($DOWI) is down -225.83 (-0.86%), and the Nasdaq 100 Index ($IUXX) is down -82.88 (-1.08%). U.S. stock indexes are sharply lower this morning on escalation of U.S./China trade tensions. China's Ministry of Commerce today said it will impose additional tariffs on $75 billion of U.S. goods in retaliation for U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods with some of the tariffs starting Sep 1 and the rest on Dec 15. Stock losses accelerated after President Trump said he will announce a response to the Chinese tariffs on Friday afternoon. The yuan fell to a new 11-1/4 year low today of 7.107 yuan/USD. Today's U.S. economic data was negative for stocks after Jul new home sales unexpectedly fell -12.8% to 635,000, weaker than expectations of +0.2% to 647,000. On the positive side for stocks was the dovish comments today from Fed Chair Powell who said the U.S. economy is in a favorable place but faces "significant risks" and "we will act as appropriate to sustain the expansion." Powell's comments bolstered speculation the Fed will cut interest rates again next month. Comments today from St. Louis Fed President Bullard were also supportive for stocks when he said, "we are willing to take all actions we need to continue the expansion" and that he expects a "robust debate" on a 50 bp rate cut by the Fed next month. The VIX S&P 500 Volatility Index ($VIX) today jumped +2.25 to 18.93%, moving further above Wednesday's 3-week low of 15.51%. The VIX is well below last Thursday's 2-week high of 24.10% and the early-Aug 7-1/2 month high of 24.81%.