"It's A Truce": Trump, Xi Agree No New Tariffs After January 1, Keep Tariff Rate At 10%
1 December, 2018
Update: Well over an hour after "the most anticipated dinner between US and Chinese presidents in years" was over, Chinese state-run TV, CGTV, finally reported that Trump and Xi had agreed to keep the US-Chinese trade war from escalating with a promise to temporarily halt the imposition of new tariff, effectively declaring a truce.
Finally, the White House also said that president Xi is open to approving the Qualcomm-NXP deal if it was presented again. And just like the the mega-M&A arb is back on the screen.
Back in China, Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen spoke to reports and said that US and China agreed to step up talks on canceling all tariffs.
While details of the outcome are yet to be released, both sides reportedly looked happy at the end of the gathering, with applause heard in the room as the dinner drew a close.
In fact, according to SCMP editor Chungyan Show, the dinner went "so well the two sides decide to take a "family photo" at the end - which is not something in the original plan."
As he was preparing to sit down with Trump, Xi was quoted as saying that he was “very happy” to be meeting with Trump after the conclusion of the Group of 20 summit, and that he saw the occasion as an “opportunity to exchange views”.
“Cooperation is the best choice for both sides. I would like to take advantage of the opportunity tonight to exchange views with the president on issues of common concern and plan for the next phase of Sino-US relations.”
While the contents of an agreement, if any, have yet to be leaked, what is known is what was served during the dinner between Trump and Xi: grilled sirloin steaks paired with a malbec from the Argentine winery Catena Zapata; it's unclear if that is bullish or bearish. Also, since Trump doesn't drink, he most likely had a diet coke.
But in what may be the biggest surprise of the night, Trump reportedly rolled away from the Park Hyatt hotel and headed to the airport and back to D.C., and there has bee no readout from the White House yet of his meeting with Chinese President Xi.
Traders, investors, pundits and reports are all hoping that Trump will have some (encouraging) comments for them from Air Force 1, or else the most expected dinner in years between the two leaders will have been an epic dud.
And until then, we look forward to flashing red headlines of media leaks describing what was said and done, what was agreed what wasn't...