Markets, dollar plunge as Trump takes White House

Markets, dollar plunge as Trump takes White House

Initial confidence that market favourite Hillary Clinton would win vanished as results showed the firebrand tycoon picking up the major scalps needed to take the White House.

HONG KONG: Share markets plunged on Wednesday (Nov 9) and the dollar tumbled against the yen and the euro as Donald Trump was elected US president, in a stunning upset with major implications for the world economy.

The Mexican peso also fell to a record low as safe-haven assets soared, with gold rising more than five per cent and German government bonds rallying. Fears about the impact on financial markets led Japanese and South Korean authorities to call crisis talks.

Initial confidence that market favourite Hillary Clinton would win vanished as results showed the firebrand tycoon picking up the major scalps needed to take the White House.

After he won a swathe of states, Clinton called Trump to concede, handing him the keys to the White House.

Markets have been plunged into turmoil as Clinton was considered by many investors to be a safer bet than Trump, who is seen as a loose cannon with policies many fear could wreck the world's number-one economy.

"It's been a bloodbath in the markets over the last few hours with the Mexican peso suffering particularly," said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at OANDA.

Tokyo had collapsed 5.4 per cent by the end of trade, while Hong fell 2.2 per cent and Shanghai sank 0.6 per cent.

Sydney gave up almost two percent, Seoul shed 2.3 per cent and Singapore dived 1.1 per cent. Wellington plunged 3.3 per cent while Taipei was 3.0 per cent off. Manila skidded 2.5 per cent and Jakarta two per cent.

The Sensex on the Bombay Stock Exchange was three per cent off, having initially plummeted more than six percent on Trump's performance and news that high-denomination notes were being pulled from circulation as part of a crackdown on tax evasion.

Futures on the S&P 500 and Nasdaq on Wall Street dived more than five per cent at one point while those on the Dow were off four per cent.

In early European trade London fell 1.9 per cent, Paris lost 2.8 per cent and Frankfurt dived 2.9 per cent.

CRISIS TALKS

The Mexican peso - which was battered by Trump's anti-immigrant rhetoric earlier in the campaign - hit a record low against the dollar.

The greenback soared to 20.7128 pesos, around its highest-ever point and about 12 per cent up on earlier levels, before paring back slightly.

Trump's anti-Mexican promises have included a pledge to remove undocumented immigrants, build a border wall and tear up a trade deal.

Mexico's Finance Minister Jose Antonio Meade and central bank chief Agustin Carstens will address the media later in the day to outline actions after the peso's losses.

The dollar tumbled against the yen as investors rushed into the Japanese unit, which is considered a safe bet in times of uncertainty. The greenback sank to 101.30 yen from above 105 Tuesday before edging back up to 103.00 yen.

The sharp moves led Japan's central bank and government to hold emergency talks as a stronger yen hammers the country's crucial exporters.

Later it emerged Seoul's financial regulatory body would hold an emergency meeting with executives at major local banks to monitor the impact of the result. The South Korean won was down 1.3 per cent.

The euro also rose 2.1 per cent against the dollar, while gold soared 5.4 per cent at one point - its biggest rally since Britain's June vote to leave the EU, which also jolted markets.

High-yielding currencies in Asia-Pacific were battered against the dollar, with Australia's dollar 0.9 per cent off, Indonesia's rupiah down 0.8 per cent and the Malaysian ringgit 0.4 per cent lower.

Oil prices plunged, with both main contracts more than two per cent down.

Key figures around 0800 GMT

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: DOWN 5.4 per cent at 16,251.54 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 2.2 per cent at 22,415.19 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: DOWN 0.6 per cent at 3,128.37 (close)

London - FTSE 100: DOWN 1.9 per cent at 6,718.85

Dollar/Mexican peso: UP at 20.1100 from 18.6152 pesos late Tuesday

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.2500 from $1.2378 Tuesday

Euro/pound: UP at 90.07 pence from 89.03 pence

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.1243 from $1.1020

Dollar/yen: DOWN at 103.00 yen from 105.14 yen

Oil - West Texas Intermediate: DOWN $1.22 at $43.76 per barrel

Oil - Brent North Sea: DOWN $1.08 to $44.96 per barrel

New York - Dow: UP 0.4 per cent at 18,332.43 (close)

Source: AFP

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