US futures and global markets rocked after Trump tested positive for coronavirus


Dow (UNDUE)Futures were down 445 points, or 1.6%, roughly matching their initial decline after Trump tweeted his condition. S&P 500 (SPX) futures contracts fell 1.7% and Nasdaq (COMP) futures were down 2.3%. The diagnosis is a destabilizing moment that raises questions about the election campaign and the American administration.

“Tonight @FLOTUS and I tested positive for COVID-19. We will begin our quarantine and recovery process immediately, ”Trump tweeted shortly before 1 a.m.ET on Friday. “We’re going through this TOGETHER!” ”

Asia-Pacific stocks have also slipped in the news. From Japan Nikkei 225 (N225) ended down 0.7%, while Australia’s S & P / ASX 200 was down 1.4%. Other markets in the region, including those in Hong Kong, mainland China and South Korea, are closed on public holidays. European stocks were weaker in morning trading, FTSE 100 (UKX) decline of 1% in London, while France CAC 40 (CAC40) paid 2% and Germany DAX (DAX) decreased by 1.1%.

Oil futures also fell. U.S. crude futures fell 4.3% to $ 37.06 a barrel, while Brent, the world’s benchmark for oil, fell 4.2% to $ 39.20 a barrel. The two had settled lower on Thursday.

“Trump’s diagnosis is immediately negative,” said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst for Asia-Pacific in Oanda, adding that safe havens are likely to strengthen at the news. The Japanese yen has already surged and was last trading at around 105 yen to the US dollar, up 0.4%. Gold prices were little changed at $ 1,913 per ounce.US equity futures were already trending lower earlier the fate of a massive US economic stimulus package has remained uncertain, and News broke that Trump’s top aide Hope Hicks had tested positive for the virus.

Before Trump announced his diagnosis, CNN medical analyst Dr Jonathan Reiner said Hicks’ positive test should be enough to push Trump and his West Wing workers into quarantine.

“They should all be off duty, anyone in the West Wing,” Reiner told CNN’s Don Lemon. “Seriously, the virus doesn’t care if you don’t take it seriously. It is an incredibly contagious pathogen. ”

Halley said investors should now research how far the virus has spread throughout the U.S. administration.

“Has Covid-19 now spread to the upper echelons of leadership in the US government, including Senate Republicans?” He said, adding that many are elderly men and therefore in a high risk group. “It will be an evolving situation over the next weekend and will lead to a sustained rotation to defensive positioning if that becomes a reality. ”

– Charles Riley, Anneken Tappe and Jazmin Goodwin contributed to this report.


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