Tech leads Wall Street higher as trade fears ebb

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange February 24, 2015. — Reuters pic
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange February 24, 2015. — Reuters pic

NEW YORK, July 5 — ticked higher today on signs that Washington may dial back on plans for tariffs on European cars, soothing some worries about trade even as looked set to face US tariffs.

Technology stocks led the gains, with chipmakers Qualcomm, Micron and Qorvo among the top gainers. Micron said a temporary ban on some sales in China would hurt its quarterly revenue by just 1 per cent.

The Philadelphia Semiconductor index rose about 1.4 per cent amid a broad rally across sectors.

Washington offered to abandon threatened levies on European cars in return for concessions, with German Chancellor Angela Merkel responding by saying she would back lowering European Union tariffs on US car imports.

Shares of European automakers rose, with New York-listed stock of Fiat gaining 6 per cent. Ford climbed 0.5 per cent and General Motors rose 1.5 per cent.

The Trump administration’s tariffs on US$34 billion (RM137.4 billion) of imports are due to go into effect at 0401 GMT tomorow and Beijing said it would respond in equal measure on US goods ranging from cars to soybeans the instant US measures go into effect.

Trump has threatened to escalate tariffs to as much as US$450 billion worth of Chinese goods if China retaliates.

Robert Pavlik, chief investment strategist at SlateStone Wealth LLC in New York, said that there was hope in the market that leaders were still just positioning before finally coming to terms that would head off a deeper conflict.

“Trump has already said that he wants to negotiate on car tariffs, I think that’s an indication that he is negotiating to get people at the table to make acceptable resolutions for everyone,” Pavlik said.

At 9.56am EDT the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 116.16 points, or 0.48 per cent, at 24,290.98, the S&P 500 was up 12.64 points, or 0.47 per cent, at 2,725.86 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 45.94 points, or 0.61 per cent, at 7,548.61.

The US Federal Reserve is also set to release minutes from its June 12-13 policy meeting at 2pm ET, where it raised interest rates for a second time this year and flagged that more are likely.

The ADP National Employment Report showed private employers added 177,000 jobs in June, below Reuters’ consensus of an increase of 19,000. That comes ahead of the more comprehensive non-farm payroll report tomorrow.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners for a 1.62-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and for a 1.49-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded one new 52-week highs and three new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 40 new highs and 12 new lows. — Reuters

Source: The Malay Mail Online

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