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U.S. Stocks Rise on Signs of Easing Trade Tensions: Markets Wrap

U.S. stocks rebounded for second day on signs the Trump administration is working toward easing tensions with trade partners. Treasuries advanced.

The S&P 500’s two-day gain was the biggest in more than a month after Bloomberg reported President Donald Trump would postpone by up to six months a decision on car tariffs that was due by Saturday. The benchmark is still down over 3% since the the trade war with China flared last week. American and German carmakers jumped on the news. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin also said negotiators were close to a deal with Mexico and Canada on removing metals tariffs, helping to boost indexes.
The two-year Treasury yield touched the lowest level since February 2018 early Wednesday before paring losses, while the 10-year rate fell to 2.37%. The dollar erased its advance against major peers to trade little changed. Oil rose above $62 a barrel.
The possibility that the president will delay penalties on cars and end steel and aluminum tariffs helped calm investors concerns about Trump’s protectionist turn against major trade partners, outside of China. However, anxiety still hovered over markets after unexpectedly weak U.S. and Chinese economic numbers Wednesday heightened worries the trade war could weigh on a global economy that’s already staggering.
“We just had political talk out today about not taking on another region of the world at the same time in regards to autos,” said Matt Forester, chief investment officer at BNY Mellon’s Lockwood Advisors. “Any news from the administration around lessening of trade disputes is going to be received pretty well, and we’re seeing that today.”

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