Some stock indexes, such as the UK's FTSE 100, fell after US President Donald Trump said that a trade deal with China might not happen until after the election in 2020 - provided he is re-elected of course.
"Markets simply aren’t priced for this; for a trade deal to be that far in the future – if one can even be struck at all," says Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at Markets.com.
"Combined with the barrage of tariff threats on the EU, the comments can be taken as a sign that the White House has no qualms about levying further tariffs and is happy about using trade as a economic, political and diplomatic weapon."
But he adds: "Of course, Donald Trump’s shoot-from-the-hip comments in these kind of interviews need to be taken with a dose of salt – we could just as easily see him row back on this later, as has happened countless times already. We’re only ever a tweet away from saying that a deal is very close to see a rebound.
"However, it’s clear that hopes for even a skinny deal being done this year have diminished in the last two days and markets are reflecting this."
The FTSE 100 is now down 1.25% at 7,195.20.