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Global Stocks Sink Tuesday             12/10 05:50

   Global stock markets fell Tuesday as investors looked ahead to a U.S. tariff 
deadline on Chinese imports and American and European interest rate decisions.

   BEIJING (AP) -- Global stock markets fell Tuesday as investors looked ahead 
to a U.S. tariff deadline on Chinese imports and American and European interest 
rate decisions.

   Markets also were watching for the outcome of Britain's snap election 
Thursday amid uncertainty over plans to leave the European Union.

   Benchmarks in London and Frankfurt declined in early trading. Tokyo and Hong 
Kong declined while Shanghai closed higher after spending most of the day in 
negative territory.

   Washington is due to impose new tariff hikes Sunday on $160 billion of 
Chinese goods in a fight over Beijing's technology ambitions and trade surplus.

   Investors expect President Donald Trump to put off or scrap the increase but 
talks on an interim "Phase 1" agreement announced in October have failed to 
agree on details.

   "All hell could break loose if the tariffs don't get postponed," said 
Stephen Innes of AxiTrader in a report. That would tell investors "they have 
yet again been taken down the trade talk garden path only to end up at the 
cliff edge of trade war purgatory."

   Chinese spokespeople have appealed for a prompt resolution to the fight that 
threatens to chill global economic growth. Trump rattled markets last week by 
saying he might be willing to wait until after next year's presidential 

   London's FTSE 100 opened 0.6% lower at 7,191.95 and Germany's DAX lost 0.7% 
to 13,007.19. France's CAC 40 declined 0.5% to 5,808.63.

   On Wall Street, futures for the Standard & Poor's 500 index and the Dow 
Jones Industrial Average were down less than 0.4%.

   In Asia, the Shanghai Composite Index ended up 0.1% at 2,917.32. Tokyo's 
Nikkei 225 was off less than 0.1% at 23,410.19 and Hong Kong's Hang Seng 
declined 0.2% to 26,436.62.

   Seoul's Kospi rose 0.4% to 2,098.00 and Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 lost 0.3% to 
6,706.90. India's Sensex opened down 0.5% at 40,270.11. Taiwan and Singapore 
declined while New Zealand advanced.

   Wall Street closed lower, snapping a three-day winning streak for the 
benchmark S&P 500 index.

   Losses for technology, health care and financial companies outweighed gains 
elsewhere in the market.

   The S&P 500 lost 0.3% and the Dow fell 0.4%. The Nasdaq dropped 0.4%. 

   Forecasters expect little change from the U.S. Federal Reserve when its 
latest policy meeting ends Wednesday.

   The U.S. central bank has cut its benchmark lending rate three times this 
year as what Chairman Jerome Powell called insurance against the economic drags 
from the tariff battle with Beijing and slower global growth.

   A meeting of the European Central Bank on Thursday also is expected to 
produce no surprises. Forecasters expect the bank to affirm commitment to its 
dovish bias amid warnings about European economic weakness and risk to growth.

   British leaders are looking to Thursday's election for 650 seats in the 
House of Commons to break an impasse over departure from the EU and London's 
future relationship with the trade bloc.

   Prime Minister Boris Johnson pushed for a vote more than two years early in 
hopes of winning a majority. He has promised to take Britain out of the EU by 
Jan. 31 is his Conservatives win.

   The opposition Labour Party is promising to renegotiate the divorce deal, 
then give voters the choice in a referendum of leaving the EU on those terms or 
remaining in the bloc.

   CHINA INFLATION: Chinese consumer inflation spiked to a seven-year high of 
4.5% due to shortages of pork that pushed up food costs. The price of pork rose 
110.2% over a year earlier. An outbreak of African swine fever has disrupted 
supplies by prompting farmers and Chinese authorities to quarantine, destroy or 
slaughter early millions of pigs. Forecasters noted the peak of the outbreak 
appeared to be passing and pork prices rose only 3.8% compared with the 
previous month.

   ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude lost 7 cents to $58.95 per barrel in electronic 
trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract declined 18 cents on 
Monday to close at $59.02. Brent crude, used to price international oils, shed 
3 cents to $64.22 per barrel in London. It lost 14 cents the previous session 
to $64.25.

   CURRENCY: The dollar gained to 108.59 yen from Monday's 108.55 yen. The euro 
advanced to $1.1070 from $1.1064. 


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