Here we go again. We get optimism about a trade deal. We hear about low level talks. And then the president just lowers the boom, telling his minion to proceed with tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese products.
So the market goes up, once again, on hopeful trade chatter from Treasury and then gets kyboshed by the president himself, causing stocks to rally and then pirouette down.
When will people realize that what matters is that the president wants China to cave, not talk. Only when we see the most important trade person in the White House, Peter Navarro, the president's top trade advisor, come out and say he thinks there could be a deal, should you believe that one is at hand.
Tariffs and trade are still the biggest drivers of stocks. The one thing that's different today from other days when the president has talked tough is that the industrials actually didn't fall. Many did quite well. However, the overall market did get hit and it shows you the need to stay a little nimble and not buy big at one level. Let the president's comments work for you. The president may have had a strong hand in our robust employment picture but that picture is being used by him to take the Chinese on in a way that no one from this country has ever seen. So don't get fooled by the endless attempts by Treasury Secretary Mnuchin to solve "China." He's not in charge. The president, heavily influenced by Navarro, is.