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Monthly Review - May 2024

one month ago

Quick look on
The Markets



S&P 500




FTSE 100


CAC 40


DAX 30


BEL 20






Source: Bloomberg 31.05.2024
Biden slaps on tariffs

Biden slaps on tariffs

President Biden announced a big jump in tariffs on imports of clean tech products from China. This includes a doubling of tariffs on electric vehicles to 100% and a hike to 50% tariffs on solar panels. Biden’s $18 billion of tariffs adds to the $300 billion imposed under the Trump presidency. These are perhaps not the most significant elements of US-China trade, but the message is clear and is aimed to appeal directly to voters in the US manufacturing states. Meanwhile, the risk is rising of copycat tariffs by the European Union, to discourage China from simply switching exports to Europe.

First cuts in June

First cut in June

Markets clung on to the belief that the European Central Bank (ECB) will take the first step to interest rate cuts at their meeting in early June. Helpfully, Eurozone inflation has continued its steady decline, meaning any wage demands can be reined back. Inflation data in the US and the UK have also crept lower, but failed to match forecasts, pushing rate cut expectations here back to September at the earliest. Meanwhile, equity markets continued to hit all time highs, as the glide path to lower rates remained very much in sight.

Chips with everything?

Chips with everything?

Nvidia, the company that dominates the market for generative AI microchips, announced blowout Q1 revenue figures, citing record levels of AI chip demand. Nonetheless, the competition continued to hot up. Apple launched an ‘outrageously powerful chip’, which will power the AI functions of its new iPad. And chip design is now central to the AI development plans of rival tech giants, such as Microsoft, Alphabet (Google) and Amazon, all of whom are planning new products. Elsewhere, at the AI Seoul Summit, leading companies in the sector signed up to new round of commitments on AI safety.

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