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Trump says US stock market will crash if he loses election

New Delhi 

US President Donald Trump said on Tuesday the US stock market will crash if he loses the election this year.

During a trip to India, Mr Trump told business leaders stocks will jump higher if he is re-elected, but "if I don't win you're going to see a crash like you've never seen before" .

He said his administration planned to announce tax cuts for the middle class in the not too distant future. Mr Trump also said that Monday's steep fall in share prices was bad because of fears of the coronavirus, but the United States was in good shape in terms of tackling the problem.

He said Chinese President Xi Jinping was working hard on the issue. "And I think it is going to be under control ... I think it is going to work out fine. We hope so," Mr Trump said.

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On a proposed trade deal with India, Mr Trump touted "tremendous progress". There was an expectation that a mini-deal would be unveiled before the US president's visit, but Mr Trump has since said he's in no hurry to finalise it. "I'm optimistic we can reach a deal that will be of great importance to both countries," Mr Trump said on Tuesday while sharing a stage with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi.

The momentum on trade appeared to pave the way for closer strategic relations, as the US looks to court India as a counterweight to China. Mr Trump lauded increased security ties with India and showered praise on Mr Modi, who has faced protests - including during the president's visit - over a citizenship law that singles out Muslims.

Central to that focus is the US$3 billion defence deal the two nations signed on this visit, which will boost the South Asian nation's naval strength in waters where China is seeking greater leverage. Mr Trump also highlighted the revamped "Quad" - a group involving the US, India, Japan and Australia - that's taking on greater significance as the perceived threat of a more dominant China continues to grow.

"Together the prime minister and I are revitalising the quad initiative," Mr Trump said, noting that expanded cooperation between the four nations on maritime and cyber security was vital "to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific".

Mr Trump also touched upon Chinese communications giant Huawei Technologies Co's potential involvement in India's 5G network. In December, India decided to allow Huawei to be included in its 5G trials.

"We discussed importance of a secure 5G wireless and the need for this emerging technology to be a tool for freedom, progress and prosperity - not to do anything where it could be even conceived as a conduit for suppression and censorship," Mr Trump said. REUTERS, BLOOMBERG

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