The ASX200 immediately plummeted on opening on Wednesday, before staging a slow recovery throughout the day to finish 0.72 per cent down.
It came after a Twitter tirade launched by US president Donald Trump triggered an enormous sell-off on Wall Street overnight, with all the major indices falling by more than three per cent.
“It just sort of highlights the kind of uncertainty and the mixed messages we have got out of this China deal over the weekend,” TMS Capital portfolio manager Ben Clark told Trading Day.
“I think last night was a big knee-jerk reaction [on Wall Street] to some Donald Trump tweets… the market really went off a cliff after that occurred,” he added.
….I am a Tariff Man. When people or countries come in to raid the great wealth of our Nation, I want them to pay for the privilege of doing so. It will always be the best way to max out our economic power. We are right now taking in $billions in Tariffs. MAKE AMERICA RICH AGAIN
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 4, 2018
The Australian session largely mirrored the Asian region, as the Shanghai Composite, Japan’s Nikkei, and Hong Kong’s Heng Seng all closed down, as the tweets signalled no clear end in sight for the trade war between the US and China.
We are either going to have a REAL DEAL with China, or no deal at all – at which point we will be charging major Tariffs against Chinese product being shipped into the United States. Ultimately, I believe, we will be making a deal – either now or into the future….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 5, 2018
Australia’s big four banks were all hit, with Westpac (1.08 per cent), NAB (0.82 per cent), ANZ (0.72 per cent), and CBA (1.13 per cent) all closing down.
Australian miner Lynas was the worst performer during the session, dropping more than 22 per cent after the Malaysian government cracked-down on its licensing conditions, while supermarket chain Coles was one of the top stocks.