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West Wing turmoil over President Trump's response to Charlottesville race clashes

18 Août 2017

On Thursday, however, a rumor that President Donald Trump's top economic advisor Gary Cohn was quitting his team spooked the seemingly calm markets and exposed a possible risk going forward.

Late on Thursday, the White House said Trump has abandoned plans to create an infrastructure advisory council.

Shortly after condemning the Barcelona attacks as terrorism, President Trump promoted a graphic, unfounded story about U.S. General John Pershing executing Muslim insurgents in the Philippines in the early 20th century.

"Markets have been on the look for a trigger over the past couple of days, in our view, and may have found their catalyst", analysts at TD Securities wrote, referring to the Barcelona attacks which have killed at least 13 people.

After Trump's comments about the Charlottesville violence, Cohn spoke with numerous friends who asked him if he would step down, people familiar with those conversations said.

Cohn, a former Goldman Sachs president who has close ties to many business leaders, is seen as a key lifeline for executives who are increasingly wary that Trump will be able to secure the pro-business economic platform he promised during the campaign.

The Nasdaq Composite was down 87.89 points, or 1.39 percent, at 6,257.22.

United States says joint S.Korea war games not on the negotiating table
Ahead of Kim's inspection of the army, North Korea said it will develop a plan by mid-August for a missile test targeting Guam. But Mr Moon said he believes dialogue with North Korea can happen when North Korea halts missile and nuclear tests.

A senior administration official who is weighing the option of resigning said he made a decision to join the administration believing he could contribute his quota by bringing in his expertise and experience that the President was lacking in his business career, and to encourage him to be mindful of what he says publicly and to allies and partners, but he is now beginning to think twice about his future with the administration.

"The Fed is still fairly comfortable with the economics, but they're getting more concerned about the politics".

The Philippine Stock Exchange index, the 30-company benchmark, shed 56 points, or 0.7 percent, to close at 8,016.73, as five of the six major sectors declined. Shares of Dow component Cisco Systems fell 4 percent a day after its results, while Wal-Mart was down 1.6 percent after the retailer reported a drop in margins due to continued price cuts and e-commerce investments. The S&P 500 has had just four 1 percent declines this year.

The S&P 500 volatility index, known unofficially as the "fear index", surged 32.5 percent.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a 4.55-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 3.89-to-1 ratio favoured decliners.

US crude rose 0.49 percent to $47.01 per barrel and Brent was last at $50.89, up 1.23 percent on the day. Most European bonds edged higher as they tried to catch up to USA yields.

Bourses in Europe and Asia closed before the attack, and mostly fell on uncertainty following minutes from the European Central Bank meeting that showed concerns over the rising euro.