Yen rises, stocks set to slip as U.S. raises stakes in trade conflict

TOKYO (Reuters) – The yen rose across the board on Wednesday and Asian stocks were poised to come under pressure after the United States said it would impose tariffs on an extra 200 billion worth of Chinese imports, escalating the trade war.

FILE PHOTO: People walk past an electronic board showing Japan’s Nikkei average outside a brokerage in Tokyo, Japan, March 23, 2018. REUTERS/Toru Hanai

Washington decided to impose the extra tariffs after efforts to negotiate a solution to the trade dispute failed to reach an agreement, senior administration officials said on Tuesday.

The United States had just imposed tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods on Friday, firing the first shots of a trade war. U.S. President Donald Trump had warned then that his country may ultimately impose tariffs on more than $500 billion worth of Chinese imports, essentially all Chinese goods.

S&P 500 and Dow futures were down 0.73 percent and 0.83 percent, respectively, pointing to a lower open for Wall Street later in the day.

Wall Street shares had gained for the past few sessions, enjoying a lull from the trade war fears that lashed global markets last week.

The yen, often sought in times of political tensions and market turmoil, gained against a number of peers.

The dollar was down 0.1 percent at 110.875 yen, pulled back from a near two-month peak of 111.355.

The euro fell 0.3 percent to 130.02 yen and the Australian dollar lost 0.65 percent to 82.26 yen.

The Aussie, considered a liquid proxy for China-related trades, fell 0.5 percent against the dollar to $0.7418.

Reporting by Shinichi Saoshiro; Editing by Eric Meijer

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