We knew that the details attached to the phase I deal signed in January didn’t hold up to even the flimsiest of scrutiny, primarily due to a not insignificant little clause thrown into the agreement: as market conditions warrant. With the outbreak of the coronavirus, welcome to the Phase I backdoor. If truth be told however, this agreement was all about face- saving to begin with and the proof is best shown in the price action pre and post-signing. If you look at what was touted as the major beneficiary of the deal: agriculture (particularly soybeans) you can see that the market itself held little faith that China would ever come through with purchases of the size promised, particularly with a huge crop coming from Brazil and a severely weak Brazilian Real. Market conditions, in the eyes of the Chinese, is synonymous with cheaper elsewhere and one can rest assured that the price deterioration produced by the slowdown in global supply chains will virtually ensure that this weak agreement produces almost no new net gains in trade.