US equities ended a bloodbath day as investor sentiment was hurt by uncertainties surrounding the upcoming US-China trade negotiations following President Trump’s tariff threat.

The S&P 500 index fell 1.65%, with all sectors declining. Information Technology (-2.12%), Industrials (-2.04%), Healthcare (-1.95%) and Materials (-1.82%) were among the worst performers.

At this moment, the sell-off in the US market is catalysed by trade tensions, but it cannot be totally attributed to a single reason. As global markets registered tremendous gains in the first four months of the year without a meaningful correction, the risk of profit-taking was building. And President Trump gave the market a perfect reason to do that.

Technically, the S&P 500 is testing a key support level at 2,880 points. Breaking down will lead to a flip in its SuperTrend (10,3) which signals a trend reversal. Immediate support and resistance can be found at 2,792 and 2,940 points respectively.

Crude oil prices fell 2% overnight, extending their bearish trends as the SuperTrend (10,2) has flipped bearish two weeks ago. Key reasons behind crude's sell-off include: a relatively strong US dollar, rising US commercial crude inventories over the past six weeks, the US President exerting political pressure over OPEC+ to increase output in order to lower energy prices and concerns over global demand as trade tensions escalate. For Brent, near-term support can be found at US$ 68.0, resistance at US$ 72.5.

Asian markets are likely to take clues from a weak US session as trade concerns weigh on sentiment. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index tumbled 1.5% at the open, and South Korean’s Kospi index fell 0.66%.

The currencymarket is showing a ‘risk off’ too, with safe-havens like JPY and CHF outperforming, while GBP and NZD are lagging among the G10 currencies. USD/JPY dived further to 110.13 this morning, close to a two-month low. It’s near-term trend remains bearish and a key support of 109.8 is likely to be tested in the coming days.

The gold price advanced for a fourth day as political tensions boosted demand for safety. Technically, gold is still in a bearish trend as its SuperTrend (10,2) remains red, and its price has registered lower-highs and lower-lows since mid-February. For a trend-reversal to be confirmed, it needs to break out above $1,292.

US SPX 500 – Cash (day) chart

 

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