Wall Street finished higher Monday after technology and industrial companies led the way on the back of news that President Donald Trump said he would delay a planned hike in tariffs on Chinese imports.
Trump said he was optimistic that a trade deal could be reached with China, although he added that an agreement may still not happen.
Stocks jumped midday but fell back slightly at the end of the trading session.
Elsewhere, the tech-laden Nasdaq climbed by nearly 27 points, or 0.4%, to finish at 7,554.
Spark Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:ONCE) skyrocketed, up 120% at US$113.48 after Swiss drugmaker Roche Holding AG agreed to buy the Philadelphia-based gene therapy company, in a deal valued at US$8 billion.
The S&P 500 popped by 0.1% to hit 2,796, while the Russell 2000 index of small-cap stocks lagged slightly, down 0.1% at 1,589.
In Canada, Toronto’s S&P/TSX Index rose 44 points or 0.27%, to reach 16,057 by the closing bell.
1:30 pm: Wall Street marches higher as optimism grows about US-China trade pact
The positive action on Wall Street stayed on course in the afternoon session on Monday, with financial stocks pushing higher in the wake of President Donald Trump’s announcement that he will put off raising tariffs on Chinese goods after “very productive” trade talks with the country.
Issuing his comments via Twitter, Trump said the US would not slap tariffs on imports from China at the start of March. But no deadline was provided by Trump that gave an indication of when a trade pact is likely.
Biomarin Pharmaceutical and Ctrip.Com International Ltd also boosted the tech-laden Nasdaq, which added 0.34% to hit 2,802.
Elsewhere, the S&P 500 jumped 0.34% to 2,802, lifted by General Electric, which surged 8.3% to $11.02 after agreeing to sell its biotech business to Danaher for $21.4 billion. Danaher was also up 8% at $122.59.
Outperforming the S&P’s other sector indices, were financial stocks, which were up 1.02% against a 0.56% rise from tech stocks and a 0.54% gain from industrial companies.
Up in Canada, Toronto’s TSX popped by 0.32% to 16,064 while the Russell 2000 index of small-cap stocks jumped 0.31% to 1,595.
10:00 am: Wall Street opens higher amid China trade deadline extension
Wall Street opened higher Monday as an extension of a key deadline for the U.S. and China to come to a trade agreement spurred investors’ risk appetites.
The Nasdaq Composite index also surged into the green, up 70.57 points, or 0.94% to 7,598.11, Advanced Micro Devices, JD.com, and Biomarin Pharmaceuticals.
Elsewhere, the Russell 2000 index of small-cap stocks gained 8.53 points, or 0.54% to 1,598.
7.15 am: US stocks gearing up to start the week higher as Trump boosts sentiment with trade comments
US stocks are set for a higher open Monday as investor sentiment has been boosted by President Trump's comments on trade.
The 45th US premier confirmed via Twitter at the weekend that he would delay a major increase to tariffs on Chinese goods coming into America as there had been progress in negotiations between the two economic giants.
Previously, March 1 (Friday) has been set as a deadline.
I am pleased to report that the U.S. has made substantial progress in our trade talks with China on important structural issues including intellectual property protection, technology transfer, agriculture, services, currency, and many other issues. As a result of these very......— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) 24 February 2019
Global markets rallied on the news and in Asia overnight, perhaps unsurprisingly, the Chinese Shanghai Composite Index surged 5.6% or 157 points - the best gain in over three years. Japan's Nikkei 225 added 103 points to 21,528.
In Europe today, benchmarks are also higher, but gains are muted. The FTSE 100 in London is up nearly two points. The German DAX and French CAC 40 are also higher.
Ahead for this week in the US, highlights to look out for are GDP (gross domestic product) numbers Thursday.
On Wall Street on Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 181 points at 26,031, while the S&P 500 index added nearly 18 and the Nasdaq index gained nearly 68 points at 7,527. In Toronto, the TSX gained around 12 on Friday at 16,013.
In US futures trade Monday, the Dow Jones is up 158 points, while the Nasdaq is up 45 points. The S&P 500 index is up nearly 13.