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May 17, 2019

CNN Video I Tapper on Trump tweet: 54 words, many of them not true

DealBook | Facebook’s A.I. Whiz Now Faces the Task of Cleaning It Up. Sometimes That Brings Him to Tears.

18-23 minutes

MENLO PARK, Calif. — Mike Schroepfer, Facebook’s chief technology officer, was tearing up.
For half an hour, we had been sitting in a conference room at Facebook’s headquarters, surrounded by whiteboards covered in blue and red marker, discussing the technical difficulties of removing toxic content from the social network. Then we brought up an episode where the challenges had proved insurmountable: the shootings in Christchurch, New Zealand.
In March, a gunman had killed 51 people in two mosques there and live streamed it on Facebook. It took the company roughly an hour to remove the video from its site. By then, the bloody footage had spread across social media.
Mr. Schroepfer went quiet. His eyes began to glisten.
“We’re working on this right now,” he said after a minute, trying to remain composed. “It won’t be fixed tomorrow. But I do not want to have this conversation again six months from now. We can do a much, much better job of catching this.”
The question is whether that is really true or if Facebook is kidding itself.
For the past three years, the social network has been under scrutiny for the proliferation of false, misleading and inappropriate content that people publish on its site. In response, Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, has invoked a technology that he says will help eliminate the problematic posts: artificial intelligence.
Before Congress last year, Mr. Zuckerberg testified that Facebook was developing machine-based systems to “identify certain classes of bad activity” and declared that “over a five- to 10-year period, we will have A.I. tools” that can detect and remove hate speech. He has since blithely repeated these claims with the media, on conference calls with Wall Street and at Facebook’s own events.
Mr. Schroepfer — or Schrep, as he is known internally — is the person at Facebook leading the efforts to build the automated tools to sort through and erase the millions of such posts. But the task is Sisyphean, he acknowledged over the course of three interviews recently.
That’s because every time Mr. Schroepfer and his more than 150 engineering specialists create A.I. solutions that flag and squelch noxious material, new and dubious posts that the A.I. systems have never seen before pop up — and are thus not caught. The task is made more difficult because “bad activity” is often in the eye of the beholder and humans, let alone machines, cannot agree on what that is.
In one interview, Mr. Schroepfer acknowledged after some prodding that A.I. alone could not cure Facebook’s ills. “I do think there’s an endgame here,” he said. But “I don’t think it’s ‘everything’s solved,’ and we all pack up and go home.”
The pressure is on, however. This past week, after widespread criticism over the Christchurch video, Facebook changed its policies to restrict the use of its live streaming service. At a summit in Paris with President Emmanuel Macron of France and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern of New Zealand on Wednesday, the company also signed a pledge to re-examine the tools it uses to identify violent content.
Mr. Schroepfer, 44, is in a position he never wanted to be in. For years, his job was to help the social network build a top-flight A.I. lab, where the brightest minds could tackle technological challenges like using machines to pick out people’s faces in photos. He and Mr. Zuckerberg wanted an A.I. operation to rival Google’s, which was widely seen as having the deepest stable of A.I. researchers. He recruited Ph.D.s from New York University, the University of London and the Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris.
But along the way, his role evolved into one of threat removal and toxic content eliminator. Now he and his recruits spend much of their time applying A.I. to spotting and deleting death threats, videos of suicides, misinformation and outright lies.
“None of us have ever seen anything like this,” said John Lilly, a former chief executive of Mozilla and now a venture capitalist at Greylock Partners, who studied computer science with Mr. Schroepfer at Stanford University in the mid-1990s. “There is no one else to ask about how to solve these problems.”
Facebook allowed us to talk to Mr. Schroepfer because it wanted to show how A.I. is catching troublesome content and, presumably, because it was interested in humanizing its executives. The chief technology officer often shows his feelings, according to many who know him.
“I don’t think I’m speaking out of turn to say that I’ve seen Schrep cry at work,” said Jocelyn Goldfein, a venture capitalist at Zetta Venture Partners who worked with him at Facebook.
Facebook has been under pressure to deal with misinformation and other inappropriate content on its site. The company has set up “war rooms” to deal with election interference.CreditDavid Paul Morris/Bloomberg

Facebook has been under pressure to deal with misinformation and other inappropriate content on its site. The company has set up “war rooms” to deal with election interference.CreditDavid Paul Morris/Bloomberg
But few could have predicted how Mr. Schroepfer would react to our questions. In two of the interviews, he started with an optimistic message that A.I. could be the solution, before becoming emotional. At one point, he said coming to work had sometimes become a struggle. Each time, he choked up when discussing the scale of the issues that Facebook was confronting and his responsibilities in changing them.
“It’s never going to go to zero,” he said of the problematic posts.
One Sunday in December 2013, Clément Farabet walked into the penthouse suite at the Harrah’s hotel and casino in Lake Tahoe, Nev. Inside, he was greeted by Mr. Schroepfer and Mr. Zuckerberg.
Mr. Zuckerberg was shoeless. Over the next 30 minutes, the C.E.O. paced back and forth in his socks while keeping up a conversation with Dr. Farabet, an A.I. researcher at New York University. Mr. Zuckerberg described A.I. as “the next big thing” and “the next step for Facebook.” Mr. Schroepfer, seated on the couch, occasionally piped up to reinforce a point.
They were in town to recruit A.I. talent. Lake Tahoe was the venue that year for NIPS, an academic conference dedicated to A.I. that attracts the world’s top researchers. The Facebook brass had brought along Yann LeCun, an N.Y.U. academic who is regarded as a founding father of the modern artificial intelligence movement, and whom they had just hired to build an A.I. lab. Dr. Farabet, who regards Dr. LeCun as a mentor, was also on their shortlist.
“He basically wanted to hire everybody,” Dr. Farabet said of Mr. Zuckerberg. “He knew the names of every single researcher in the space.”
Those were heady days for Facebook, before its trajectory turned and the mission of its A.I. work changed.
At the time, Silicon Valley’s biggest tech companies — from Google to Twitter — were racing to become forces in A.I. The technology had been dismissed by the internet firms for years. But at universities, researchers like Dr. LeCun had quietly nurtured A.I. systems called “neural networks,” complex mathematical systems that can learn tasks on their own by analyzing vast amounts of data. To the surprise of many in Silicon Valley, these arcane and somewhat mysterious systems had finally started to work.
Mr. Schroepfer and Mr. Zuckerberg wanted to push Facebook into that contest, seeing the rapidly improving technology as something the company needed to jump on. A.I. could help the social network recognize faces in photos and videos posted to its site, Mr. Schroepfer said, and could aid it in better targeting ads, organizing its News Feed and translating between languages. A.I. could also be applied to deliver digital widgets like “chatbots,” which are conversational systems that let businesses interact with customers.
“We were going to hire some of the best people in the world,” Mr. Schroepfer said. “We were going to build a new kind of research lab.”
Starting in 2013, Mr. Schroepfer began hiring researchers who specialized in neural networks, at a time when the stars of the field were paid millions or tens of millions of dollars over four or five years. On that Sunday in 2013 in Lake Tahoe, they did not succeed in hiring Dr. Farabet, who went on to create an A.I. start-up that Twitter later acquired. But Mr. Schroepfer brought in dozens of top researchers from places like Google, N.Y.U. and the University of Montreal.
Mr. Schroepfer also built a second organization, the Applied Machine Learning team, which was asked to apply the Facebook A.I. lab’s technologies to real-world applications, like facial recognition, language translation and augmented reality tools.
In late 2015, some of the A.I. work started to shift. The catalyst was the Paris terrorist attack, in which Islamic militants killed 130 people and wounded nearly 500 during coordinated attacks in and around the French capital. Afterward, Mr. Zuckerberg asked the Applied Machine Learning team what it might do to combat terrorism on Facebook, according to a person with knowledge of the company who was not authorized to speak publicly.
In response, the team used technology developed inside the new Facebook A.I. lab to build a system to identify terrorist propaganda on the social network. The tool analyzed Facebook posts that mentioned the Islamic State or Al Qaeda and flagged those that most likely violated the company’s counterterrorism policies. Human curators then reviewed the posts.
It was a turning point in Facebook’s effort to use A.I. to weed through posts and eliminate the problematic ones.
Mr. Schroepfer after answering questions about the Cambridge Analytica scandal at a British parliamentary committee hearing in London in April 2018.CreditSimon Dawson/Bloomberg

Mr. Schroepfer after answering questions about the Cambridge Analytica scandal at a British parliamentary committee hearing in London in April 2018.CreditSimon Dawson/Bloomberg
That work soon gathered momentum. In November 2016, when Donald J. Trump was elected president, Facebook faced a backlash for fostering misinformation on its site that may have influenced voters and laid the groundwork for Mr. Trump’s win.
Though the company initially dismissed its role in misinformation and the election, it started shifting technical resources in early 2017 to automatically identify a wide range of unwanted content, from nudity to fake accounts. It also created dozens of “integrity” positions dedicated to fighting unwanted content on subsections of its site.
By mid-2017, the detection of toxic content accounted for more of the work at the Applied Machine Learning team than any other task. “The clear No. 1 priority for our content understanding work was integrity,” Mr. Schroepfer said.
Then in March 2018, The New York Times and others reported that the British political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica had harvested the information of millions of Facebook users without their consent, to build voter profiles for the Trump campaign. The outcry against the social network mushroomed.
Mr. Schroepfer was soon called to help deal with the controversy. In April 2018, he flew to London to be the designated executive to face questions from a British parliamentary committee about the Cambridge Analytica scandal. He was grilled for more than four hours as one parliamentary member after another heaped criticism on Facebook.
“Mr. Schroepfer, you have a head of integrity?” Ian Lucas, a Labour Party politician, said to the grim-faced executive during the hearing, which was live streamed around the world. “I remain unconvinced that your company has integrity.”
“It was too hard for me to watch,” said Forest Key, chief executive of a Seattle virtual reality start-up called Pixvana, who has known Mr. Schroepfer since they worked together at a movie effects technology start-up in the late 1990s. “What a burden. What a responsibility.”
The challenge of using A.I. to contain Facebook’s content issues was on — and Mr. Schroepfer was in the hot seat.
From his earliest days at Facebook, Mr. Schroepfer was viewed as a problem solver.
Raised in Delray Beach, Fla., where his parents ran a 1,000-watt AM radio station that played rock ’n’ roll oldies before switching to R&B, Mr. Schroepfer moved to California in 1993 to attend Stanford. There, he majored in computer science for his undergraduate and graduate degrees, mingling with fellow technologists like Mr. Lilly and Adam Nash, who is now a top executive at the file-sharing company Dropbox.
After graduating, Mr. Schroepfer stayed in Silicon Valley and went after thorny technical undertakings. He cut his teeth at a movie effects start-up and later founded a company that built software for massive computer data centers, which was acquired by Sun Microsystems. In 2005, he joined Mozilla as vice president for engineering. The San Francisco nonprofit had built a web browser to challenge the monopoly of Microsoft and its Internet Explorer browser. At the time, few technical tasks were as large.
“Browsers are complex products, and the competitive landscape is weird,” said Mike Shaver, a founder of Mozilla, who worked alongside Mr. Schroepfer for several years. “Even early on in his career, I was never worried about his ability to handle it all.”
In 2008, Dustin Moskovitz, a co-founder of Facebook, stepped down as its head of engineering. Enter Mr. Schroepfer, who came to the company to take that role. Facebook served about two million people at the time, and his mandate was to keep the site up and running as its numbers of users exploded. The job involved managing thousands of engineers and tens of thousands of computer servers across the globe.
“Most of the job was like a bus rolling downhill on fire with four flat tires. Like: How do we keep it going?” Mr. Schroepfer said. A big part of his day was “talking engineers off the ledge of quitting” because they were dealing with issues at all hours, he said.
Over the next few years, his team built a range of new technologies for running a service so large. (Facebook has more than two billion users today.) It rolled out new programming tools to help the company deliver Facebook to laptops and phones more quickly and reliably. It introduced custom server computers in data centers to streamline the operation of the enormous computer network. In the end, Facebook significantly reduced service interruptions.
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, testified before Congress last year that the company was developing machine-based systems to “identify certain classes of bad activity.”CreditTom Brenner/The New York Times

Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, testified before Congress last year that the company was developing machine-based systems to “identify certain classes of bad activity.”CreditTom Brenner/The New York Times
“I can’t remember the last time I talked to an engineer who’s burned out because of scaling issues,” Mr. Schroepfer said.
For his efforts, Mr. Schroepfer gained more responsibility. In 2013, he was promoted to chief technology officer. His mandate was to home in on brand-new areas of technology that the company should explore, with an eye on the future. As a sign of his role’s importance, he uses a desk beside Mr. Zuckerberg’s at Facebook headquarters and sits between the chief executive and Sheryl Sandberg, the chief operating officer.
“He’s a good representation of how a lot of people at the company think and operate,” Mr. Zuckerberg said of Mr. Schroepfer. “Schrep’s superpower is being able to coach and build teams across very diverse problem areas. I’ve never worked really with anyone else who can do that like him.”
So it was no surprise when Mr. Zuckerberg turned to Mr. Schroepfer to deal with all the toxicity streaming onto Facebook.
Inside a Facebook conference room on a recent afternoon, Mr. Schroepfer pulled up two images on his Apple laptop computer. One was of broccoli, the other of clumped-up buds of marijuana. Everyone in the room stared at the images. Some of us were not quite sure which was which.
Mr. Schroepfer had showed the pictures to make a point. Even though some of us were having trouble distinguishing between the two, Facebook’s A.I. systems were now able to pinpoint patterns in thousands of images so that it could recognize marijuana buds on their own. Once the A.I. flagged the pot images, many of which were attached to Facebook ads that used the photos to sell marijuana over the social network, the company could remove them.
“We can now catch this sort of thing — proactively,” Mr. Schroepfer said.
The problem was that the marijuana-versus-broccoli exercise was not just a sign of progress, but also of the limits that Facebook was hitting. Mr. Schroepfer’s team has built A.I systems that the company now uses to identify and remove pot images, nudity and terrorist-related content. But the systems are not catching all of those pictures, as there is always unexpected content, which means millions of nude, marijuana-related and terrorist-related posts continue reaching the eyes of Facebook users.
Identifying rogue images is also one of the easier tasks for A.I. It is harder to build systems to identify false news stories or hate speech. False news stories can easily be fashioned to appear real. And hate speech is problematic because it is so difficult for machines to recognize linguistic nuances. Many nuances differ from language to language, while context around conversations rapidly evolves as they occur, making it difficult for the machines to keep up.
Delip Rao, head of research at A.I. Foundation, a nonprofit that explores how artificial intelligence can fight disinformation, described the challenge as “an arms race.” A.I. is built from what has come before. But so often, there is nothing to learn from. Behavior changes. Attackers create new techniques. By definition, it becomes a game of cat and mouse.
“Sometimes you are ahead of the people causing harm,” Mr. Rao said. “Sometimes they are ahead of you.”
On that afternoon, Mr. Schroepfer tried to answer our questions about the cat-and-mouse game with data and numbers. He said Facebook now automatically removed 96 percent of all nudity from the social network. Hate speech was tougher, he said — the company catches 51 percent of that on the site. (Facebook later said this had risen to 65 percent.)
Mr. Schroepfer acknowledged the arms race element. Facebook, which can automatically detect and remove problematic live video streams, did not identify the New Zealand video in March, he said, because it did not really resemble anything uploaded to the social network in the past. The video gave a first-person viewpoint, like a computer game.
In designing systems that identify graphic violence, Facebook typically works backward from existing images — images of people kicking cats, dogs attacking people, cars hitting pedestrians, one person swinging a baseball bat at another. But, he said, “none of those look a lot like this video.”
The novelty of that shooting video was why it was so shocking, Mr. Schroepfer said. “This is also the reason it did not immediately get flagged,” he said, adding that he had watched the video several times to understand how Facebook could identify the next one.
“I wish I could unsee it,” he said.

Sourvr: NYT

Politics I US reaches deal to lift steel and aluminum tariffs on Canada and Mexico

Kayla Tausche,Jacob Pramuk

The United States has reached a deal to lift steel and aluminum tariffs on Canada and Mexico, removing one key obstacle to passing updates to the North American Free Trade Agreement.
In a joint statement Friday, the Canadian and American governments said the U.S. will scrap the metals duties within two days. Canada will remove tariffs levied on American goods in retaliation for the steel and aluminum duties. The countries will also:
  • Drop all pending litigation in the World Trade Organization related to the tariffs
  • Set up measures to “prevent the importation of aluminum or steel that is unfairly subsidized and/or sold at dumped prices” and “prevent the transshipment of aluminum and steel made outside of Canada or the United States to the other country”
  • Make an “agreed-upon process for monitoring aluminum and steel trade between them”
In a separate statement, the Mexican government also said it would remove retaliatory tariffs it put on the U.S. and cease pending litigation. Mexico also said it would set up measures to stop unfair trade practices in the aluminum and steel markets and to monitor trade of the metals in North America.
Trump referenced the tariff removal during remarks Friday to the National Association of Realtors, saying, “I’m pleased to announce we’ve just reached an agreement with Canada and Mexico to sell product without the imposition of major tariffs.”
The Canadian and Mexican governments, along with top U.S. lawmakers, have pushed the Trump administration to remove the tariffs before the countries approve the United States Mexico Canada Agreement. President Donald Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau spoke earlier Friday about the duties on metals and the tariffs Canada slapped on U.S. goods in retaliation, according to a spokesman for Trudeau.
A worker walks past a steel coil loaded on a truck, at a plant in Monterrey, Mexico on August 27, 2018.
Julio Cesar Aguilar | AFP | Getty Images
“Now that we’ve had a full lift on these tariffs we are going to work with the United States on timing for ratification” of USMCA, Trudeau said after speaking with steelworkers on Friday. He said he is “optimistic” about moving forward with the agreement in the coming weeks.
Trump cited a national security threat when he put respective tariffs of 25 percent and 10 percent on steel and aluminum imports last year. When the White House decided not to exempt Canada and Mexico, the U.S. neighbors and some members of Congress questioned why the allies posed a threat to the U.S.
The deal could boost Trump’s hopes of getting the USMCA, one of his top policy priorities, through Congress. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, among others, pushed him to remove the tariffs before lawmakers ratify the trade agreement.
Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle cheered the de-escalation in tensions with Canada and Mexico. Grassley, an Iowa Republican, said “the biggest hurdle to ratifying USMCA has been lifted.” Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., called the move “great for America, great for our allies and certainly great for Nebraska’s agriculture industry.”
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said “we should be focusing our effort on China, not on Mexico, Canada or Europe.” But he added “there are still many other issues that are outstanding before Democrats would support the USMCA.”
The deal still faces its challenges: Democrats have raised concerns about environmental and labor provisions in USMCA, as well as how it could affect drug prices in the U.S. Mexico passed a labor law last month in part to address those concerns.
On Wednesday, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer met with Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland. The negotiators were expected to discuss a process for removing the tariffs.
The Trump administration aims to send paperwork to Congress soon, which could set up a vote on USMCA before lawmakers leave for the entire month of August.
The White House’s recent escalation of a trade war with China rattled investors and raised concerns about damage to businesses and consumers. But developments Friday boosted markets.
Before reports of the deal to remove steel and aluminum tariffs, the Trump administration said it would delay tariffs on imports of cars and auto parts from Europe, Japan and other countries.
— CNBC’s Christina Wilkie contributed to this report
Correction: An earlier version misstated when Trudeau was speaking to steelworkers. It was Friday afternoon.
Subscribe to CNBC on YouTube.

Source: CNBC

Bonds I Bonds Yields Report on May 17, 2019 ITreasury yields steady between US-China unease, Brexit talks, strong consumer sentiment

Thomas Franck

U.S. government debt yields ticked lower on Friday as tensions over a simmering trade war between the U.S. and China and a breakdown in Brexit talks in the U.K. offset stronger consumer sentiment data.
The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note was marginally higher at 2.389%, while the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond traded at 2.821%. The spread between the 10-year Treasury yield and the 3-month Treasury bill yield was -0.6 basis points. Bond yields move inversely to prices.

U.S. Markets Overview: Treasurys chart

US 3-MOU.S. 3 Month Treasury2.393-0.0080.00
US 1-YRU.S. 1 Year Treasury2.3350.000.00
US 2-YRU.S. 2 Year Treasury2.20-0.0070.00
US 5-YRU.S. 5 Year Treasury2.176-0.010.00
US 10-YRU.S. 10 Year Treasury2.394-0.0110.00
US 30-YRU.S. 30 Year Treasury2.826-0.0140.00
Investors pivoted toward safer assets like government debt Friday after President Donald Trump moved to block Huawei from buying American technology, ratcheted up tensions between the globe’s two largest economies. Washington and Beijing are in the middle of a fierce trade dispute, including taxes on billions of dollars worth of imports.
Most recently, the U.S. increased the tariff rate on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports to 25% from 10% after Beijing attempted to renegotiate terms of the trade agreement. China’s ruling Communist Party’s newspaper struck a defiant tone Friday, insisting the trade war will only make China stronger.
CNBC’s Kayla Tausche reported Friday that negotiations between the US and China appear to have stalled as both sides dig in after disagreement earlier this month. Sources confirmed that scheduling for the next round of negotiations is “in flux” after China reneged on certain trade promises earlier this month.
In Europe, the U.K.’s top political parties failed to devise a solution to the Brexit process.
Despite six weeks of talks the ruling Conservative Party and main opposition Labour party, the politicians could not come up with an agreement. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn wrote in a letter to Prime Minister Theresa May on Friday that talks had “gone as far as they can go.”
On the data front Friday, consumer sentiment surged to its highest level in 15 years. The data helped yields recover some of their earlier losses. The University of Michigan’s preliminary print on its consumer sentiment index rose to 102.4, up from 97.2 in April.
“Consumers viewed prospects for the overall economy much more favorably, with the economic outlook for the near and longer term reaching their highest levels since 2004,” said Richard Curtin, chief economist for the Surveys of Consumers.
— CNBC’s Spriha Srivastava contributed reporting.

Source: CNBC

Markets I Wall Street Closing Report I Stocks fall following a sell-off in the final hour on news US-China trade talks have stalled

Fred Imbert

Stocks slid on Friday after CNBC reported that trade talks between China and the U.S. have stalled.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded 113 points lower, erasing a slight gain, while the S&P 500 was down 0.6%. The Nasdaq Composite traded 1% lower.
Sources told CNBC’s Kayla Tausche that scheduling discussions for further trade talks have been put on hold since the Trump administration has increased scrutiny of Chinese telecom companies. A U.S. delegation had been invited to Beijing earlier this week.
Apple shares fell 0.8%, bringing its weekly losses to 4.4%. Caterpillar shares also traded lower.
Earlier this week, the administration made it harder for U.S. companies to do business with Huawei, a giant telecommunications company in China. U.S. firms that want to do business with Huawei must now have a license. Shares of Huawei U.S. suppliers like Qualcomm, Qorvo and Micron Technology fell 2.3%, 6.7% and 3.7%, respectively.
  “Through any lens, this is a broadside against the Chinese government, which is generally considered to be the beneficial owner of Huawei,” said Tom Essaye, founder of The Sevens Report, in a note. “This obviously ups the ante in the US-China trade war as the stakes are growing. At this point, it’s unclear how China will respond, but some sort of response is expected.”
China has also ratcheted up its rhetoric on trade with the U.S.
Chinese Commerce Ministry spokesman Gao Feng said Thursday, according to state-run news agency Xinhua, that the U.S. is exhibiting “bullying behavior” with its latest moves on the trade front, noting it is “regrettable that the U.S. side unilaterally escalated trade disputes, which resulted in severe negotiating setbacks.”
The U.S. hiked tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods last week while China retaliated Monday with higher levies on $60 billion worth of U.S. products.
“People are now coming to grips with the fact that this is going to take a long time,” said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager at Globalt. “I think we’re going to get more volatility, but generally it makes sense for the market to be where it is right now.”
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
Brendan McDermid | Reuters
Chinese stocks fell sharply overnight. The Shanghai Composite dropped 2.5% and posted its longest weekly losing streak since July 2018.
Deere shares fell more than 6% after reporting weaker-than-expected earnings. The company cited the ongoing trade war for their disappointing results.
U.S. stocks started off the week with a massive sell-off on Monday. But Wall Street followed up those losses with three straight days of gains. Through afternoon trading on Friday, the major averages were down only slightly for the week.
Still, the S&P 500 remains down more than 2% since Trump tweeted about the higher tariffs on May 5.
“Clearly, what unleashed the pullback was the initial tweet saying the additional tariffs were going to kick in,” said Liz Ann Sonders, chief investment strategist at Charles Schwab. “That being said, there are a number of catalysts that could have caused this pullback. We had seen the market get technically overbought. Breadth started to deteriorate. There was tremendous amount of, at best, complacency or, at worst speculative excess.”
“We just needed a spark,” Sonders said.
—CNBC’s Spriha Srivastava contributed to this report.

Source: CNBC