This might not be a good day to check on the 401k. American stock futures were down significantly ahead of the open, and markets in Europe and Asia dropped on new tension between the US and China, reports the Wall Street Journal. More specifically, investors appeared to be rattled after President Trump issued a pair of tweets Sunday (and another early Monday) threatening to raise tariffs on Chinese goods and criticizing the pace of trade talks set to resume in Washington this week. Dow futures were down about 521 points, or 2%; S&P futures were down 55 points, or 1.9%, and Nasdaq futures were down 184 points, or 2.3%, per MarketWatch.
“If there is one thing the markets dislike, it is the unexpected and Trump’s tweet caught the markets completely off-guard sending investors into a risk off frenzy," Jasper Lawler of London Capital Group wrote in a note to clients. "We know from past experience that this could be one of Trump’s infamous negotiating tactics, but there is a good chance that this time it will backfire." Trump continued the theme Monday morning: "The United States has been losing, for many years, 600 to 800 Billion Dollars a year on Trade," he tweeted. "With China we lose 500 Billion Dollars. Sorry, we’re not going to be doing that anymore!" The new tension will likely cut short Vice Premier Liu He's scheduled visit to Washington this week, reports the South China Morning Post. (Read more stock market stories.)