Mnuchin told CNBC that he's confident President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping can make progress in stalled trade talks.World Economyread more
U.S. stock index futures jumped Wednesday morning after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC that the U.S. and China were almost there on a trade deal.US Marketsread more
President Donald Trump's administration hopes additional sanctions on Iran will force the country to negotiate.Politicsread more
Democrats want Mueller's testimony on his probe into Russian interference in the 2016 election and Trump's efforts to influence it.Politicsread more
Stocks should rally if the U.S. and China agree to new negotiations and a ceasefire in the trade war, but the economic impact of tariffs will continue.Market Insiderread more
Bitcoin surged as high as $12,919 in early morning trade Wednesday, to its highest level since January 2018.Technologyread more
The trade war between Beijing and Washington appears to have depressed Chinese property purchases in the United States. China's own actions may also be playing a role.Real Estateread more
Tesla CEO Elon Musk sent out another email to his employees, pushing them to aim for a record number of vehicle deliveries to end the second quarter of 2019.Technologyread more
More than 300 companies are talking to government officials in Washington about how detrimental the trade war is.Marketsread more
The Senate is expected to pass its own version of the border aid legislation, while the Trump administration has threatened to veto both bills.Politicsread more
Some 4 million people have fled the South American country since 2015 amid an economic meltdown.World Politicsread more
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told CNBC on Thursday that the Trump administration has taken measures to prevent oil prices from spiking while it attempts to drive Iran's crude exports to zero.
"We are confident that we've done the hard work to make sure that the market is well supplied, and I hope that we can continue to maintain that, and I think that we can," he told CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Thursday.
Supplies from Iran, one of the world's top oil producers, are expected to fall by hundreds of thousands of barrels per day in the coming weeks after Washington tightened sanctions on the Islamic Republic this month.
While Saudi Arabia has signaled that it will pump more oil, it has also indicated that OPEC and its oil market allies are not ready to lift price-boosting output caps. Led by Saudi Arabia, the producers have been trying to keep 1.2 million barrels per day off the market since January. They appear poised to continue limiting supply in the second half of 2019.
Since President Donald Trump tightened sanctions on Iran, tensions have been rising in the Middle East.
The U.S. expedited the deployment of military assets to the Persian Gulf and withdrew diplomatic staff from Iraq, claiming threats by Iran against U.S. positions in the region. Meanwhile, Iran has ramped up production of nuclear materials, four vessels were sabotaged off the coast of UAE and Iran-aligned Houthi rebels in Yemen attacked oil infrastructure in Saudi Arabia.
Pompeo said the administration is not overhyping the threat from Iran, following reports that some members of the administration believe recent U.S. maneuvering in the region represents an overreaction to intelligence.
"We briefed Congress extensively on Tuesday," Pompeo said. "I think almost every member, Democrats and Republicans alike, walked out of that room understanding that the threats that we were discussing and the decision that President Trump made to take a posture to deter those threats and protect our forces were wholly justified and reasonable."
Despite the tension, Pompeo argued that the U.S. policy against Iran is not impacting oil prices much. He noted that Brent crude oil prices now at $69 a barrel are lower than a year ago, when the U.S. pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal and began restoring sanctions on the Iranian economy.
However, Brent prices rose to nearly four-year highs at $86.74 a barrel in October. Prices crashed in the final quarter of 2018, partly because Trump imposed looser oil sanctions on Iran than expected. Brent rallied nearly 40% to $75.60 last month and has since settled in a range between $69-$76 per barrel.
The view on Wall Street is that Middle East tensions, U.S. sanctions on Iran and Venezuela and uncertainty over whether OPEC will raise output are bolstering oil prices. The ongoing U.S.-China trade war is counteracting those bullish factors by raising concerns that global economic growth will falter and oil demand will sink.