US stocks rise as China hikes meat imports

U.S. stocks rose Wednesday on news that China is boosting meat imports to cope with a lack of domestic supply.

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China, the world’s top pork-consuming nation, is struggling with an animal disease that has forced the destruction of thousands of hogs in the nation.

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Sanderson Farms CEO Joe Sanson said his company, one of the largest American meat producers, has had inquiries on poultry sales to China, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Earlier in Wednesday’s session, stocks were mixed as China reported surprisingly weaker growth in retail sales and industrial output last month and American retail sales and industrial production for April came in weaker than expected.

The two Chinese economic reports reversed positive investor sentiment that stemmed from President Trump saying late Tuesday on Twitter that a U.S.-China trade deal could be possible soon.

The disappointing reports and ongoing trade tensions fueled fears about slowing global growth. That has the yield on the 10-year Treasury note touching a seven-week low of 2.36 percent early Wednesday, which is only slightly above the 2019 low of 2.34 percent on March 28, which, in turn, was also the lowest since December 2017.

Ticker Security Last Change %Chg I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 25670.05 +138.00 +0.54% SP500 S&P 500 2852.65 +18.24 +0.64% I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 7819.256033 +84.76 +1.10%

China said its April retail sales grew at an annualized rate of 7.2 percent, the slowest pace in 16 years and well below the 8.6 percent that had been forecast.

In addition, U.S. retail sales unexpectedly fell 0.2 percent in April versus estimates for a 0.2 percent rise. Further, American industrial production fell last month on a big drop in the production of autos and auto parts.

Shares of poultry producers led the market’s gainers.

Ticker Security Last Change %Chg SAFM SANDERSON FARMS 151.50 +0.63 +0.42%

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