Yale's Sonnenfeld: Cohn Exiting White House Would 'Crash the Markets'

Yale's Sonnenfeld: Cohn Exiting White House Would 'Crash the Markets'”

MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan dropped 0.7%, but still looked set to gain 1.4% for the week after tension between North Korea and the USA came off the boil.

The falls mark a break from a period of low volatility and subdued moves.

The council, which was supposed to have representatives from real estate, finance, labor and other sectors, was created to study and make recommendations to the president regarding the funding, support and delivery of infrastructure projects. Cohn stood behind Trump as he blamed "alt-left" protesters for charging white nationalist and Neo-Nazi protesters, some of which the president called "very fine people".

Industrial and materials stocks lifted China stocks, which some analysts said was aided by hopes there will be significant changes to open up the economy more widely to foreign investors. "Anything can be an excuse", he said.

A CEO exodus this week in response to President Trump's somewhat equivocal response to deadly racist riots, combined with rising resistance to Mr Trump among Republicans on Capitol Hill, has tempered earlier market optimism about the President delivering on his economic policies. All 30 Dow stocks fell, along with all components of the S&P 100. Adding to a raft of resignations from the president's two prominent business councils by high-profile CEOs, the rumor fueled fears about whether Trump's economic agenda will ever get off the ground.

US dollar trading was volatile and US Treasury yields fell on worries Trump will be unable to deliver on campaign promises such as tax reform, even as the White House knocked down speculation that Gary Cohn, director of the National Economic Council, would resign.

The dollar index rose 0.2 percent, with the euro down 0.24 percent to $1.174, after hitting a three-week low.

MARKET VIEW: "The White House drama shows little sign of easing", said Stephen Innes, head of Asia trading at OANDA.

The S&P also was on pace for its worst back-to-back weeks since the election.

Cisco Systems fell 4 per cent on a disappointing sales forecast and Wal-Mart dropped 1.6 per cent despite better than expected second quarter earnings driven by a 60 per cent jump in online sales.

The Toronto stock Exchange has also declined, but to a lesser extent. The Russell 2000, meanwhile, closed below its 200-day moving average - a key technical level - for the first time since June 2016.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a 3.66-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 3.24-to-1 ratio favoured decliners.

It was also the seventh straight day in which the NYSE and Nasdaq had more stocks making new 52-week lows than highs, the longest stretch since Trump's election.

Volatility in Japan, South Korea and Hong Kong increased after a measure of market fluctuations spiked higher during U.S. trading, while Australian bonds rose with the yen as investors sought havens.

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