U.S. stocks jump as trade war fears subside
NEW YORK – Stocks climbed sharply on Monday after the U.S. and China appeared to make major progress in trade talks. The Chinese government says it will buy more U.S. goods, including energy and agricultural products, and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says the U.S. postponed tariffs on up to $150 billion in goods from China. Industrial companies and banks made some of the biggest gains, while technology stocks also rose.
After jumping by as much as 371 points, the Dow Jones industrial average ended up by 298 points, or 1.2 percent, to 25,013. The S&P 500 added 20 points, or 0.7 percent, and the Nasdaq composite gained 40 points, or 0.5 percent.
The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks was on pace for another record close as it jumped 10 points, or 0.6 percent, to 1,636.
The U.S. and China concluded two days of trade negotiations with an agreement not to impose tariffs on each other, while Beijing said it will buy more farm goods, energy and other products and services from U.S. companies. The two sides gave no indication of how much progress they had made toward ending their dispute entirely, and both said hostilities could increase again.
Still, President Donald Trump framed the weekend’s talks as a clear victory for the U.S. Mr. Trump said in a tweet that “Fair Trade, plus, with China will happen!” In another tweet, he added, “China has agreed to buy massive amounts of ADDITIONAL Farm/Agricultural Products – would be one of the best things to happen to our farmers in many years!”
Trade disputes have occupied a lot of investors’ attention for the last two months, and stocks have rallied on signs progress was being made, only to fall back when the situation appeared to worsen.
On Monday, investors applauded again. Among industrials, Boeing (BA) gained 3.6 percent to $363.92, and construction equipment maker Caterpillar (CAT) rose 2.1 percent to $158.92. In the financial sector, JPMorgan Chase (JPM) rose 0.9 percent to $112.15, and Morgan Stanley (MS) added 0.8 percent to $54.36.
General Electric’s (GE) train engine division will combine with railroad equipment maker Westinghouse Air Brake Technologies in deal worth $11.1 billion as GE CEO John Flannery continues to break off parts of the conglomerate. GE will get $2.9 billion in cash and will own 50.1 percent of the combined company. The deal will help GE narrow its business down to the aviation, health care and energy industries.
Wabtec (WAB) gained 3.5 percent to $98.55, and GE rose 1.9 percent to $15.26.
Chipmakers rallied after Micron Technology (MU) raised its profit and revenue forecasts for the fiscal third quarter. Micron jumped 3.9 percent to $55.48, while Intel picked (INTC) up 1.5 percent to $54.32.
That contributed to a broad rally in technology stocks. Apple (AAPL) gained 0.7 percent to $187.63, and Google’s parent company Alphabet (GOOG) rose 1.2 percent $1,079.58 as technology companies advanced.
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