Despite Resurgent Optimism, SCMP Continues To Report "Deal Prospects Are Dim"

After last night's utter chaos as algos chased headlines, this morning's headlines from The South China Morning Post further reduce expectations for any kind of deal getting done before the Chinese leave (today or tomorrow) as despite optimism from The White House, the Chinese appear to view prospects for a deal very dimly.

Chinese diplomatic observers have played down hopes for any meaningful outcome, citing growing tensions in non-trade sectors and big differences in long-debated issues.

“The US has not changed its extensive and rigorous requests for China, nor has it responded to China’s core concerns,” Renmin University international relations professor Shi Yinhong said.

“Even if there is a deal, it could only be a mini-deal, even a minimal mini-deal. A currency pact, if true, does not bring any substance.”

Other analysts confirmed there was little hope of a breakthrough in this round of negotiations.

“Even if a deal can be reached, the US can find any excuse at any time to impose sanctions over China’s trade practices or on Chinese companies,” said Lu Xiang, a research fellow on US issues with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

“The US administration is in ‘a confusion of trivialities’ and it lacks consistency … making it hard for China to have confidence in it.

We can talk, but we are not hopeful. It would be very good if a partial deal could be reached, but a comprehensive deal as defined by the US is unlikely.”

But, as yet, traders are shrugging this off...

Maybe the machines are exhausted?