NEW YORK (Reuters) – World stock markets were buoyed by deal-making news and solid earnings from Dow components Cisco and Walmart on Thursday while strong economic data pushed U.S. bond yields higher even as investors struggled to make sense of the latest developments in global trade relations.
Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., May 16, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
A spike in U.S.-China tensions over import tariffs has convulsed markets recently as investors seek to parse statements from government leaders to gauge the direction of negotiations.
News that U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to delay auto tariffs appeared to improve the trade tone on Wednesday, but later in the day the Trump administration hit Chinese telecoms giant Huawei with severe sanctions.
“The overall market sentiment got pretty negative the last couple of days,” said Keith Lerner, chief market strategist at SunTrust Advisory Services in Atlanta. “And I think it was just a set-up where we had a little bit of good news that has gone a long way, at least for today.
“It makes sense that you are having a little bit of reprieve today based on a little better economic data and a little bit better earnings data which is drawing the attention away from China, which is still a big uncertainty right now,” Lerner said.
Wall Street’s main indexes ended solidly positive but below their session highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 214.66 points, or 0.84%, to 25,862.68, the S&P 500 gained 25.36 points, or 0.89%, to 2,876.32 and the Nasdaq Composite added 75.90 points, or 0.97%, to 7,898.05.
Shares of Cisco Systems and Walmart both gave boosts to the S&P 500 and the Dow after their respective earnings reports. Cisco shares rose 6.7% and Walmart rose 1.4%.