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A full-blown economic cold war between the United States and China could send stocks into a bear market, BTIG chief equity and derivatives strategist Julian Emanuel told CNBC on Tuesday.

“If this is really the start of a protracted economic cold war, multiples are coming in,” said Emanuel. He signaled a S&P 500 level of about 2,300 next year, nearly 14 percent lower than Monday’s close.

With the index already 9 percent lower than the Sept. 21 all-time intraday record, such a move would more than qualify as a bear market as measured by a drop of 20 percent or more from recent highs.

In putting forth this downside scenario, BTIG conducted an analysis of price-to-earnings ratios during the Cold War with Russia from 1960 to the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 to multiples from 1989 to now.

“That difference is over four multiple points,” a difference consistent with trade wars of the past, Emanuel said on “Squawk Box.” From the start of those conflicts out 12 months, the market on average has been down about 20 percent, he added.

The stock rout in October and the volatile November already knocked about 3 points off the market multiple since last year, said Emanuel.

FactSet puts the current forward 12-month P/E ratio for the S&P 500 at 15.1, below the 5-year average of 16.4 but above the 10-year average of 14.5.

“We’re still basically at historical averages. If you start drifting to that other regime, you’re talking about downside consistent with other trade wars of around 2,300 on the S&P,” Emanuel said.

The financial community has been hoping the meeting of President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping at this week’s G-20 summit in Argentina will keep the trade war between the world’s two biggest economic superpowers from escalating.

However, ahead of that meeting, Trump told The Wall Street Journal Monday it’s “highly unlikely” he would delay a planned January tariff increase on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods from 10 percent to 25 percent. The president also renewed his threat to put tariffs on the rest of China’s imports into the U.S.

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Egypt’s pound set to weaken as banks deplete their foreign currency reserves



An Egyptian youth walks past a polling station in the capital Cairo's western Giza district on March 25, 2018 ahead of the vote scheduled to begin the following day, decorated on the outside with giant privately-sponsored electoral posters depicting incumbent President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and giant pieces of cloth stacked together to show the colors of the Egyptian flag.


An Egyptian youth walks past a polling station in the capital Cairo’s western Giza district on March 25, 2018 ahead of the vote scheduled to begin the following day, decorated on the outside with giant privately-sponsored electoral posters depicting incumbent President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and giant pieces of cloth stacked together to show the colors of the Egyptian flag.

Egypt’s state banks have reportedly been propping up the Egyptian pound by selling their foreign exchange assets — a strategy that can only last a few more months, economists warn.

The pound has performed notably well compared to its other emerging market counterparts, falling only one percent against the dollar this year amid a wider EM sell-off. It has held between 17.78 and 17.98 to the dollar over the last six months, according to Reuters.

But capital flight out of Egypt has seen foreign holdings of Egyptian treasury bonds drop by $8 billion and the stock market fall by 30 percent, pressuring the currency.

Rather than intervening itself — a move that would draw swift rebuke from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which in 2016 provided the country a $12 billion loan package — the central bank has leaned on state-owned banks to sell its foreign currency assets to offset that pressure, bankers and economists say. But propping up the pound by meeting that demand for hard currency has also meant a sharp and unsustainable drop in banks’ foreign assets, according to economic consultancy Capital Economics.

“It’s difficult to know for how long this process could be sustained. At the current rate of depletion, banks would exhaust their FX assets in eight months,” the consultancy wrote in a note published Tuesday, describing Egypt’s commercial banks as having “depleted their own FX assets.”

Between April and September of this year, banks’ foreign assets nearly halved, falling from $20.61 billion in April to $12.15 billion in September, their lowest level since early 2017. Reports of state-owned banks serving as the main suppliers of foreign currency may indicate backdoor intervention by the government, analysts have said.

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Huawei blocked from providing core tech to BT’s 5G network



A BT spokesperson told CNBC over the phone that the decision was not a response to any security concerns.

However, the U.K.’s spy chief said on Monday that questions remained over Chinese firms’ access to 5G networks.

“We need to decide the extent to which we are going to be comfortable with Chinese ownership of these technologies,” MI6 chief Alex Younger told students at St Andrews University in Scotland.

The U.K. – along with Canada – is one of two nations in the Five Eyes security alliance not to ban Chinese telecoms firms from their 5G rollouts.

Last week, the New Zealand government excluded Huawei as a technology vendor for its 5G network, citing a “significant network security risk.”

Fellow members Australia and the U.S. have also banned Chinese tech firms Huawei – and ZTE in the U.S. – from their 5G networks over fears it could make national infrastructure accessible to the Chinese government.

Both Huawei and ZTE have repeatedly denied these claims. Chinese smartphone manufacturers are subject to legislation that requires citizens and businesses to cooperate with Chinese intelligence authorities.

However, Huawei has previously stated that the Chinese government cannot legally compel telecoms firms to install backdoors or listening devices in other nations.

Eric Xu, one of the rotating chairmen at Huawei, told CNBC on Thursday that blocking Huawei from the 5G market could result in higher costs for both consumers and telecoms firms.

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Qatari energy minister says leaving OPEC not political — our voice doesn’t count



Leaving OPEC was a purely strategic decision and had nothing to do with politics, Qatari Energy Minister Saad al-Kaabi told CNBC on Wednesday.

The energy-rich Gulf state announced plans to pull-out of the syndicate on Monday, just days before a meeting between the influential cartel and its allies in Vienna, Austria. Qatar will withdraw from OPEC on January 1, ending a membership that has stood for more than half a century.

Neighboring countries have enforced an 18-month political and economic boycott of Qatar but al-Kaabi said the move was not political but in fact made strategic sense as the country transitioned towards liquefied natural gas (LNG) production.

“We didn’t see ourselves fitting anymore (in OPEC),” he told CNBC’s Hadley Gamble in Vienna.

“I suggested to our leadership that we should exit OPEC. I know people and media would love to politicize this and they have politicized it — even in my country when you look at some of the media — because they don’t know the facts,” he added.

On Qatar losing influence at OPEC, al-Kaabi said there was little to be lost: “We are a small player and I don’t think that our voice counts.”

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