US-Iran sanctions – US President Donald Trump announced a new set of “hard hitting” sanctions on Iran, partly in retaliation after the downing of a US drone last week in Iranian airspace. The sanctions imposed will target Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, military officials, as well as its top diplomat, Foreign Minister Javad Zarif. Soon after the announcement, Iranian state media stated that the move has permanently closed the diplomatic path between the two countries.
G-20 Summit – The much anticipated G20 meeting commenced in Osaka, Japan this week. As leaders gather from around the world, the main focus of the event for investors will be the meeting between President Trump and China’s President Xi on Saturday, as there were signs of a truce in the “trade war” in the week leading up to the event. China’s top trade negotiator Vice Premier Liu He and US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer met today in a sign that the two sides are looking to make progress.
Euro-area sentiment – Confidence in the economic condition of the euro-area dropped to the lowest level in nearly three years in June. The European commission’s economic sentiment gauge fell to 103.3 points in June, below the median analyst forecasts of 104.8. The decline in confidence was led by industry executives, with the most significant drop in eight years. This is yet another sign that Europe’s industrial sector has taken another hit from the ongoing US-China trade negotiations and the threat of new US tariffs.