This fortnight’s focus was on the historic Trump-Kim Summit, which went on exceptionally well considering the fact that the two leaders were exchanging hostile remarks not too long ago. The short summit concluded with Mr Kim pledging to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula while the US promised to provide security guarantees to North Korea. World leaders welcomed how the conference ended on a positive note, which signified a major step towards lasting peace and stability in the Korean region.
Unfortunately, the G7 Summit that was held over the last weekend did not go that smoothly. Leaders of the G7 failed to resolve trade disagreements with President Trump following his early departure and instructions to US representatives not to endorse the communique. Nonetheless, the remaining members vowed to reform multilateral oversight of commerce through the World Trade Organization and seek to cut tariffs.
The US Federal Reserve raised key interest rate to 1.75 – 2 percent on 13 June 2018, and signaled two more hikes this year. Over the last two weeks, Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 3.2 percent to close at 25,201.20 while Hang Seng Index dipped slightly by 0.2 percent to 30,440.17.
On the local bourse, investors remained generally cautious as they watched for the outcome of the Fed meeting and the European Central Bank policy meeting, widely believed to begin the process of ending quantitative easing. The Straits Times Index slid 2.1 percent to end at 3,356.73 on muted market activities. Technically, the local benchmark is testing support at 3,350 – 3,380 with resistance at previous peaks around 3,600.