Stocks Drop After Weekend of Riots, Store Closures, Trade Tensions

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Stocks fell slightly on Monday after a weekend of destructive riots, accompanies by store closers. China also halted imports of soybeans from the U.S., another red flag on the trade-relations front. 

All three major U.S. indices fell, with the S&P 500 down a bit more than 0.3%. The 10-Year Treasury yield rose to 0.68%, a risk-on signal amidst several economic concerns. 

This week, violent riots and protests broke out in major cities like New York, Chicago, Los Angeles and Atlanta. This was in reaction to the tragic death of George Floyd, murdered at the hands of Minnesota police officer Derek Chauvin. Some concerns regarding the riots may be small business destruction and, according to Morgan Stanley biotech analyst Matthew Harrison’s Monday note, an uptick in coronavirus cases. These events would harm the economic recovery. 

Also weighing on sentiment, trade relations with China continue to worsen: China cancelled soybean imports from the U.S. That’s not a material portion of U.S. economic output, but it signals that tariffs or trade restrictions are potentially on the way. 

To keep employees safe, several companies closed stores and adjusted hours. 

Those include, Target  (TGT) - Get Target Corporation Report, Walmart  (WMT) - Get Walmart Inc. Report, Apple  (AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. (AAPL) Report and Nike  (NKE) - Get NIKE, Inc. (NKE) Report. Target shares fell more than 2%. Walmart fell 0.5%. Apple fell one-tenth of a percentage point. Nike, which does’t have many stores, rose marginally. Target reduced operating hours at most of its stores. 

Between the trade and riot issues, the U.S. market didn’t seem overly concerned. Stick with TheStreet for more perspective. 

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