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What The Pros Are Saying About Phase One Of The US-China Trade Deal

Jayson Derrick

Business confidence is sitting at the low levels typically reserved for recessions, and the finer details of the Phase One trade deal between the U.S. and China aren't enough to improve sentiment, Lori Calvasina, head of U.S. strategy at RBC Capital Markets, said Monday on "Bloomberg Daybreak: Americas."

For example, there has been a few large-scale M&A deals in 2019, but most transactions are occurring at private companies, Calvasina said. And capex spending in 2019 has been flattish to mostly down, the analyst said. 

"There is a lot of uncertainty about what's actually in this 'Phase One' deal," she said. "We are being shown these 86-page documents but we still don't know exactly what's in them."

Posen Says Deal 'Terrible' 

The U.S.-China trade dispute has lasted more than a year and has been characterized by "unnecessary economic conflict to achieve almost nothing," Adam Posen, the president of the Peterson Institute, said Friday on Bloomberg TV.

Both countries have engaged in an "economic Afghanistan" with a lot of "blood and treasure" wasted with no clear end game, he said. 

The Phase One deal amounts to he two sides agreeing to "rhetoric" about intellectual property and the resumption of some pork purchases, Posen said. 

"I think it's a terrible thing."

The world will become "less efficient" as the U.S. and China head in separate directions, with "a lot of friction" occurring among multinational companies and third-party countries, he said.

Too Early To Celebrate

The signing of the Phase One trade deal removes a notable investor overhang, but it is too early to declare it a success story, China Beige Book CEO Leland Miller said Monday on Fox Business

The trade agreement will likely be tested if the U.S. and China feud on other issues, which makes the likelihood of a "true detente" unlikely, he said. 

"It's going to continuously be a push and shove in the relationship." 

The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (NYSE: SPY) was trading 0.7% higher at the time of publication Monday, while the iShares FTSE/Xinhua China 25 Index (NYSE: FXI) was up 3.11%. 

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