Stocks Edge Higher After Trade Deal Signed

US Stock Indexes Sit at Record Highs Ahead of Earnings Season

"The signing of the trade deal is a welcome step in the de-escalation of the trade war which has weighed heavily on the US and global economies", said Luke Tilley, chief economist at money manager Wilmington Trust Delaware. In South Korea, the Kospi slipped 0.4% to 2,230.98. Shares fell in China, with the Shanghai Composite index giving up 0.3% to 3,081.38.

-China phase one trade deal and as the corporate earnings season ramps up; Dow +0.3%, S&P 500 and Nasdaq both +0.2%.

Investors had been eagerly awaiting the signing of the so-called phase one trade agreement as the conflict between the world's largest economies has dragged on for almost two years. The pact eases some sanctions on China.

The centrepiece of the truce is a pledge by China to purchase at least an additional $200 billion worth of USA farm products and other goods and services over two years, over a baseline of $186 billion in purchases in 2017.

"This was telegraphed well enough for the market to see through and look into the next phase and what that means", said Keith Buchanan, portfolio manager at Globalt Investments.

The Dow ended above 29,000 for the first time on Wednesday and the S&P 500 also closed at a record high after the United States and China signed a Phase 1 trade agreement and pledged to resolve a tariff dispute that has roiled Wall Street for over a year.

ECONOMIC NEWS: U. S. wholesale inflation rose 0.1% in December, according to the Labor Department's producer-price index. The index also rose to an all-time high on Monday. The Dow rose 90.55 points, or 0.3%, to 29,030.22.

The Nasdaq closed less than 0.1% higher, while the S&P 500 was up 0.2%.

Smaller company stocks outperformed the rest of the market. The Russell 2000 climbed 6.66 points, or 0.4%, to 1,682.40.

After trading at new records, stocks had a rough afternoon. giving back most of the day's gains. These gains outweighed losses in financials, consumer spending companies and the energy sector.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury dropped 1.65% to 1.788% while yield on the 30-year Treasury fell 1.45% to 2.242%. -China deal in hopes that it will prevent further escalation in the 18-month long trade conflict that has slowed global growth, hurt American manufacturers and weighed on the Chinese economy. The two largest economies in the world will now have to deal with more controversial trade issues as they advance the negotiations. And punitive tariffs will remain on about $360 billion in Chinese goods as talks continue.

Wall Street also digested a slew of newly-released earnings reports. BlackRock, UnitedHealth and PNC Financial also posted quarterly earnings that beat analyst expectations.

However, analysts predict that corporate earnings growth will increase by 9.5% in 2020. The pickup in mortgage applications reflects heightened demand for homes and suggests many buyers are eager to purchase a home now, rather than waiting for the traditional late-February start of the spring homebuying season.

Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange.

The reference price for crude oil fell 42 cents to $ 57.81 a barrel.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil added 0.5% to $58.10 a barrel. Brent crude, the worldwide standard, fell 49 cents to close at $ 64 a barrel.

Gold rose $2.60 to $1,556.60 per ounce.

The Japanese yen was little changed at 109.95 per dollar. The euro strengthened to $1.1150 from $1.1128.



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