Phase One. Done.
The United States and China finally came to an agreement in an attempt to de-escalate the ongoing trade war. The parameters of this Phase One deal? The U.S. hit pause on more tariffs in return for China agreeing to purchase additional agricultural products. The two countries have many more trade issues waiting in the wings to be ironed out. Phase One could serve as a constructive start to more comprehensive deal-making in the future. With the last couple years of tit-for-tat tariffs and escalation behind us, perhaps this initial deal may help smooth some very ruffled feathers.
Time for earnings.
This quarter’s earnings season is already well underway. This week’s a big one, with Apple (AAPL), Facebook (FB), Tesla (TSLA) and Microsoft (MSFT) all reporting. Let’s hope these companies show strong revenue and earnings growth while setting the tone for a positive 2020. Earnings growth ultimately drives the stock markets higher over time. A solid start to the year could go a long way to quiet the fears of a potential pullback in the market.
Coronavirus wild card.
Worries surrounding the growing threat of a coronavirus outbreak in China are being felt in the investment markets. The fear of a global pandemic is leading to the first significant sell off in this young year. This developing story bears keeping an economic eye on. Why? If the threat of this virus keeps people at home, it may pose a problem for consumer strength in China and abroad.