Headline indices of the Japan share market posted a modest gain on Thursday, 12 July 2018, as investors chased for bottom fishing a day after a bruising selloff amid fears of an escalation in the U. S.-China trade war after the United States said it would impose tariffs on an extra 200 billion worth of Chinese imports and China said it would retaliate. The market rebound was partly supported by yen depreciation to 112.00 zone, a six-month low, against the dollar. Among TSE33 issues, 25 issues inclined, while 8 declined, with shares of Fishery, Agriculture & Forestry, Information & Communication, Pharmaceutical, Electric Power & Gas, Foods, Insurance, Precision Instruments, and Transportation Equipment issues being notable gainers. However, losses in shares of Mining, Oil & Coal Products, and Nonferrous Metals issues capped market gains. At midday break, the benchmark Nikkei 225 index inclined 1.1%, or 242.71 points, to 22,174.92. The broader Topix index of all First Section issues on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, meanwhile, rose 0.66%, or 11.31 points, to 1,713.19.
The Trump administration raised the stakes in its trade war with China on Tuesday, saying it would slap 10% tariffs on an extra $200 billion worth of Chinese imports. U. S. officials released a list of thousands of Chinese imports the administration wants to hit with the new tariffs, including hundreds of food products as well as tobacco, chemicals, coal, steel and aluminum.
It also includes consumer goods ranging from car tires, furniture, wood products, handbags and suitcases, to dog and cat food, baseball gloves, carpets, doors, bicycles, skis, golf bags, toilet paper and beauty products.
China's government said it will take firm and forceful measures if the new tariffs are enacted. That response probably would include measures other than tariffs. Trump has threatened to put new taxes on almost everything the United States imports from China.
Last week, Washington imposed 25% tariffs on $34 billion of Chinese imports, drawing immediate retaliatory duties from Beijing on US imports in the first shots of a heated trade war. US President Donald Trump had warned then that his country may ultimately impose tariffs on more than $500 billion worth of Chinese imports.
CURRENCY NEWS: The Japanese yen depreciated against U. S. dollar in Tokyo on Thursday, 12 July 2018, after the US Labor Department's expectation-beating inflation report increased prospects that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates another two times this year. The dollar edged up 0.1%, trading at 112.07 yen after breaking through the psychologically significant barrier of 112 yen for the first time since Jan. 10 in U. S. trade on Wednesday.
In commodities, U. S. crude futures inched up 0.25% to $70.57 a barrel after tumbling 5% the previous day as trade tensions threatened to hurt oil demand and news that Libya would reopen its ports raised expectations of growing supply. Brent crude rose 0.7% to $73.93 a barrel after tanking 6.9% overnight.
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