Chinese Media Stay Silent as Trump Tweets Rock Stocks, Yuan

Telegram från Bloomberg / Omni Ekonomi
06 maj 2019, 06.05

(Bloomberg) -- A pair of President Donald Trump’s tweets rocked Chinese stocks and currency on Monday, but for most of the nation’s media outlets, nothing had happened at all.

More than 11 hours after Trump’s threat to raise tariffs on Chinese goods as soon as Friday, few news outlets in China have reported them. From the official Xinhua News Agency to the more market-oriented Caixin and the more belligerent Global Times, there was no information on what sent the nation’s stocks to the biggest loss in two months and caused the sharpest yuan sharpest weakening in three years.

The top news about Trump on the dominant Chinese search engine Baidu this morning is either on his call with Russian President Vladimir Putin or even his later tweet about the Mueller report.

Still, the trade war re-escalation threat found its way to millions of social media users via chat groups or feeds on the Facebook-like WeChat Moments. Some of those channels were also blocked as of 10 a.m.

Chinese authorities maintain a tight grip on media outlets across platforms, including the largest local social media firms such as Tencent Holdings Ltd and Weibo Corp. Requests for comment to Sina Weibo and Tencent weren’t immediately answered.

Bloomberg reported earlier that top leaders are considering delaying Premier Liu He’s trip to Washington this week. There has been no official comments on Trump’s tweets from the government.

Savvier social media users in China always have a way to make fun of the news. Many have likened Trump to Thanos, the intergalactic villain in the Avengers series, as the President wiped out Chinese stocks with a snap of his fingers.

--With assistance from Lulu Yilun Chen.

To contact Bloomberg News staff for this story: Xiaoqing Pi in Beijing at xpi1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Jeffrey Black at jblack25@bloomberg.net, James Mayger

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