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Markets tumble at opening bell as China, U.S. tariffs escalate

Within seconds of the opening bell Wednesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged almost 500 points, or about 2 percent. The plummet follows China's announcement Wednesday morning of tit-for-tat tariffs on $50 billion worth of U.S. goods, including soybeans — the top U.S. agricultural export to China.

The S&P was also down 1.2 percent, and the Nasdaq down 1.7 percent, per The Wall Street Journal. The Dow recovered slightly after the initial drop.

"The Chinese have clearly said two things: They don't want a trade war, but they don't fear one," explained Christian Keller, the head of economics research at Barclays Investment Bank, to the Journal.

President Trump insisted in tweets that "we are not in a trade war with China" but "when you’re already $500 Billion DOWN, you can't lose!"