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Major US equity indices kicked off a new trading week on a slightly weaker note amid intensifying US-China trade tensions.  

According to the recent reports, the Trump administration is likely to announce fresh tariffs on above $200 billion worth of Chinese imports as early as today. Meanwhile, China said that it might decline the offer for renewed trade talks if the tariffs are pushed through and might also look at retaliation steps.  

On Monday, the US President Donald Trump, via Twitter, said: “If countries will not make fair deals with us, they will be “Tariffed!” and further fueled concerns over a full-blown trade war between the world’s two largest economies.  

Analysts now seemed concerned that any further escalation could eventually impact global economic growth, which was seen as one of the key factors denting investors’ appetite for perceived riskier assets – like the equities.  

However, the downfall in the US markets, so far, has been limited as investors largely shrugged off the trade issues and instead preferred to take cues from upbeat incoming US economic data, and strong corporate earnings reports.

During the opening hour of trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down around 40-points to 26,113, and the broader S&P 500 Index lost nearly 7-points to slip below the 2,900 mark. Meanwhile, tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index underperformed the markets and fell over 50-points to 7,958.

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