Dow slides 500 points on fears U.S.-China relations will worsen after arrest of Huawei executive

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Dec. 6, 2018 / 3:54 PM GMT / Updated 9:22 PM GMT

By Lucy Bayly

Wall Street had a rollercoaster ride on Thursday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average swinging from a session low where it was down 784 points, to end the day with a decline of just 77 points.

The frenzied day of trading began overnight when news broke that Meng Wanzhou, a high-profile executive at China’s Huawei Technologies, had been arrested at the behest of U.S. authorities as she traveled in Canada at the weekend. That sparked broad fears among investors that the incident would swell into a geopolitical and diplomatic imbroglio, shattering the fragile cease-fire in the U.S.-China trade skirmish.

Markets have been on a hair-trigger all week, in response to confusion over the exact details of the trade agreement hashed out by President Donald Trump and China’s President Xi Jinping at the G-20 economic summit in Argentina.

Global markets had reacted positively to the news of the trade truce, with the Dow spiking by 500 points on Monday.

But Wall Street plunged on Tuesday after China appeared not to corroborate Trump’s sentiment that the meeting of the two world leaders was “amazing and productive” with “unlimited possibilities for both the United States and China.”

Dec. 6, 201812:31

China’s Commerce Ministry eventually released a statement Wednesday calling the trade talks “very successful” — but remained vague on the 90-day deadline for negotiations touted by the Trump administration.

The arrest of Huawei’s Meng now looms large over markets, with investors particularly spooked by the fact that Meng was arrested on the same night Trump and Xi made their alleged promise

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