Election Week and US-China Trade War: Mr. Market is Unsure

Global stocks closed varied on Tuesday (26/6). On US, the Dow rose to 24,283 (+0.12%) and Nasdaq rose to 7,561 (+ 0.39%) from previous day. In European exchanges, DAX weakened 0.29% to 12,234 while FTSE 100 rose 0.37% to 7,537. Similarly, in Asia, Hang Seng fell -0.28% to 28,881 while the Nikkei stagnated at 22,342 (+0.02%). All these are expected seeing that many are happening in the global market.

Watching global market, the hottest discussion recently is China-US trade war. It started on March 22, 2018 after Donald Trump declared a plan to put tariffs on Chinese goods on the basis of “unfair trade practices” and theft of intellectual property. As a respond, the Chinese government also put tariffs to over 128 US products that are imported there. This issue is making investors unsure and anxious, resulting in a mixed global index performance in the last few weeks.

Seeing into oil industry, news from last Tuesday reported that crude futures increased over 2 percent and US oil touched the price of $70 for the first time in two months. This is very much because of Trump’s suggestion to US’ allies to halt imports of crude oil from Iran, making the global supply decreasing. This is followed by the strengthening of energy stocks.

Another interesting matter is that global coal price keeps increasing since the end of April and is still in a positive trend. One thing to be mentioned is that Indonesia is one of the largest exporters of coal in Indonesia. In terms of coal reserves, Indonesia is ranked 10thwith 2.2 percent of global coal reserves (Statistical Review of World Energy 2018). We’re still confident that coal is prospective since it’s still the dominating force in power generation, with roughly 27% of the world’s total energy output. With the abundant reserves, added with Indonesia’s strategic geographical position, coal industry in Indonesia is still going strong.

In the domestic market, JCI’s movement on Tuesday was quite volatile until finally closed at 5,825, indicating a 0.57% decrease. We think that global sentiment is still overshadowing the movement of JCI. Investors are still worried about the trade war between China and the US, putting pressure on Asian regional indices, and eventually on Indonesian exchange. In addition, foreign investors continued to sell and recorded net sales of IDR 453.09 billion with the most sales in BBRI. We expect the movement of this week’s index to be sideways, since investors are still waiting and seeing, along with the elections held today. Even so, we believe that there is an upside potential from the increase of oil and coal price, strengthening energy-based stocks.

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