The trade-war rhetoric was beginning to quiet in May and that left many investors optimistic about what's to come.
After a solid run in the stock market, though, equities are coming under pressure thanks to renewed trade-war fears between China and the U.S. As President Trump continues to tack on additional tariffs against China, the latter of which is doing the same in a retaliatory reaction.
Monday stocks opened lower but recovered from the worst of its losses as many posted solid gains on the day. But Tuesday, after another round of tariff news, stocks were reeling again and investors weren't in as much of a buy-the-dip mood.
Among those being hit? Automakers and suppliers.
General Motors Co. (GM) - Get Report and Ford Motor Co. (F) - Get Report saw their stocks down 4% and 2%, respectively, in midday trading. A potentially slowing repatriation process certainly doesn't excite investors, while higher auto part import costs could weigh on profitability.
Tesla Inc. (TSLA) - Get Report -- which has its own rogue sabotage situation under investigation -- is looking to open a new factory in China. Concerns over auto part imports could be weighing on the stock, but it could also be due to the straining relationship between the U.S. and China and a stock price that's seen big gains over the past few weeks.
Tesla was down about 4.7% to $353 as a result.
All sorts of suppliers big and small are down on the news, too. Some are doing better than others, like Johnson Control International (JCI) - Get Report , Visteon Corporation (VC) - Get Report and (LKQ) - Get Report Corporation (LKQ) - Get Report , which are down 0.5%, 1% and 0.5%, respectively. American Axle & Manufacturing (AXL) - Get Report is down just 0.5% as well.
Others aren't doing quite as well, though.
Magna International Inc. (MGA) - Get Report is down almost 4%, while Delphi Automotive (DLPH) - Get Report is down almost 3%. Borg Warner Inc. (BWA) - Get Report is off 2.2%, Lear (LEA) - Get Report is down 1.75% and Autoliv Inc. (ALV) - Get Report is down 2%.
Although tech stocks have their own tariff issues to worry about, many also supply parts to automotive companies these days. Qualcomm Corporation (QCOM) - Get Report and NXP Semiconductors (NXPI) - Get Report are each down about 2% and Intel (INTC) - Get Report is off 1.2%.
Again, the weakness in tech shouldn't necessarily be traced back to the automotive sector as the sole catalyst, but it's one more factor for investors to consider. When in stress, though, many prefer to sell now and ask questions later.
This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author had no positions in the stocks mentioned.