China Tensions Rise, Big Bank Earnings

Although the United States and some of its strongest allies like the U.K. and Japan are increasingly telegraphing their displeasure with a power-hungry China, Wall Street couldn’t care less.

That was the message sent by markets on Tuesday, as all three major U.S. stock indices finished notably higher — despite the U.K. outright banning China communications powerhouse Huawei from making equipment for its 5G networks.

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Meanwhile, the U.S. is formally challenging China’s territorial claims in the South China Sea, and Japan is proactively ramping up military operations in unusual fashion as concerns over China’s own aggressive shows of military force increase.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, meanwhile, rose 556 points, or 2.1%, to finish at 26,642 on Tuesday.

Banks set aside billions. In mixed earnings reports this week, three of the largest U.S. banks, JPMorgan (ticker: JPM), Citigroup ( C) and Wells Fargo ( WFC) set aside a combined $28 billion in anticipation of pandemic-fueled loan defaults.

Although JPMorgan and Citigroup both posted dramatically improved trading revenue, each emphasized the economic uncertainty lying ahead; Wells Fargo posted a steeper-than-expected loss, and sharply cut its quarterly dividend from 51 cents a share to just 10 cents a share.

Fisker going public. Through the increasingly popular method of a blank-check acquisition company, electric carmaker Fisker will be hitting the public markets at a roughly $2.9 billion valuation. Although its first vehicles are not yet on the road, the company aims to use proceeds from the Spartan Energy Acquisition Corp. ( SPAQ) deal to produce the Fisker Ocean, an all-electric SUV, which it aims to put out by 2022 at a starting price of $37,500.

It’s a timely move as competitors to electric automaker Tesla ( TSLA) pop up left and right, capitalizing on investor enthusiasm that has sent Tesla shares rocketing to new all-time highs.

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