Market Morning: Tariffs Come Into Force, More Bitcoin ETFs Bite Dust, ARAMCO IPO Dies

More Tariffs Take Effect as US-China Trade War Enters New Round

25% tariffs on $16 billion worth of US and Chinese goods went into effect at midnight, signaling a new round in the trade war between the world’s two largest economies that refuses to let up. The two now have tariffs implemented on $100 billion worth in combined goods. The worry is that since President Trump has threatened to place tariff on all goods coming from China, the Chinese may retaliate by harming US companies in China, which ultimately would harm their own citizens, but so do tariffs. In bragging about how much the US can ultimately hurt itself, Commerce Secretary in charge of placing barriers against commerce, Wilbur Ross, said that the US can harm itself and its own people more than China can harm itself, and he was proud of this for some reason, exhorting, “But at the end of the day, we have many more bullets than they do. They know it. We have a much stronger economy than they have, they know that too,” Ross said.

More Bitcoin ETFs Rejected by SEC

The Winklevoss twins are not the only ones to be shot down by the Securities and Exchange Commission on a Bitcoin (BTC-USD) ETF. Direxion, ProShares, and GraniteShares were all rejected yesterday as well, for failing to show how they would prevent fraudulent or manipulative practices. The ruling doesn’t come as much of a surprise, and at this point it is doubtful if cryptocurrency will ever make it to a major exchange in ETF form. The crypto complex hasn’t reacted much over the disappointed, still meandering in the same trading range it’s been since February.

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Aramco IPO Quietly Dies, As Most Suspected

An unnamed Saudi official involved in the now postmortem Aramco IPO has confirmed what many have suspected for a while now. The Aramco IPO died a long time ago, and perhaps an actual IPO was never intended in the first place. “The decision to call off the IPO was taken some time ago, but no-one can disclose this, so statements are gradually going that way – first delay then calling off,” a Saudi source familiar with the IPO plans said. However, the Saudi Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih has denied this, saying that the IPO will happen, just at whatever time the Saudi government decides. The price of oil (NYSEARCA:USO) doesn’t seem too concerned about this, with WTI just below $68 and not moving much on the news. Apparently, oil traders are taking the news as no surprise.

Fed Minutes Set Up Trump As Fall Guy For Recession

It was earlier this week that President Trump chewed out Federal Reserve Chair Jay Powell for raising interest rates too high. Well, the latest Fed minutes release shows broad consensus for a September rate hike, but also emphasize that the escalation of the trade war could derail the economy and force the Fed to stop hiking rates. In other words, Powell is setting up Trump to take the blame if the economy goes south, as Powell will blame it on the trade war, while Trump will blame it on Powell’s rate hikes. “Most expressed the view that an escalation in international trade disputes was a potentially consequential downside risk for real activity,” the minutes said.

Facebook Suspends Apps, Admits 4 Million Users Had Their Data Misused

Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) is under fire again for leaving users’ data unsecured as a third party app on the platform called Mypersonality, which hasn’t been active since 2012, has refused an audit of how data was used, and so is suspected of sharing that data with companies for advertising purposes. The company has suspended over 400 third party apps since revealing the breach. Facebook shares are still reeling from disappointing growth numbers at last earnings but seem to have stabilized for now.

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