The trade “war” between the United States and China has hit stock markets in China a lot harder than in the US, according to one Hong Kong analyst who predicted that the two countries are likely to end up doing some kind of a deal.
“I think we’re gonna get compromise,” Capital Link International chief executive Brett McGonegal said in an interview with Bloomberg Television.
McGonegal said he had always thought the trade conflict was a “war of words” and that US President Donald Trump’s threats to impose tariffs on a huge amount of Chinese goods was just posturing. He did not believe Trump had passed a “point of no return” in terms of punitive action over China’s huge trade surplus and reluctance to open its markets further.
“I think both [Chinese President] Xi and Trump know that neither one of them gains – there’s no winner in a trade war.”
But the impact of Trump’s rhetoric appeared to have hit one side much harder than the other.
“The Chinese [stock] market has really suffered from all the back and forth, and certainly the uncertainty. As we all know, markets don’t like uncertainty. They have a really hard time pricing it in and they normally overprice uncertainty to the downside, which I think you’ve seen in Shanghai.”
Meanwhile, US markets were still chugging along – “a week off all-time highs and you’ve got record earnings that have come out this week from some of the market leaders, while Shanghai’s down 20%.”
Investors in global markets appeared to have decided that China was most at risk in the event of a fully fledged trade war.
But leaders in neither country wanted to admit they lost a trade row, which made him think some kind of compromise might be achieved in another sector and the trade row would just be left to “go away”.
Brett McGonegal is also a principal shareholder in Asia Times.