Global shares mostly higher on hopes for US-China trade deal

TOKYO (AP) — Global stocks mostly rose yesterday as investors hoped for a possible resolution to the bruising trade war between the United States (US) and China.

Shares rose in Europe, tracking gains on Wall Street and in Asia. France’s CAC 40 edged up nearly 0.3 per cent to 5,071.19, while Germany’s DAX was 0.2 per cent higher at 11,149.41. Britain’s FTSE 100 edged up 0.7 per cent to 7,183.35.

US shares were set to drift higher, with Dow futures adding 0.3 per cent to 25,473. S&P 500 futures gained 0.2 per cent to 2,750.8.

President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that he might let a March 2 deadline slide in trade talks with China if the two countries get close to a deal. Earlier, the White House had said it was a “hard deadline”.

Both nations are trying to reach a deal before additional tariffs are due to kick in, escalating the conflict and further hurting companies and consumers with higher prices for materials and products.

The trade dispute is detrimental to the export-dependent Asian region, and a slowdown in growth in China is hurting neighbouring economies.

ASIA’S DAY: Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 added 1.3 per cent to finish at 21,144.48. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 1.2 per cent at 28,497.59. The Shanghai Composite index jumped 1.8 per cent to 2,721.07. In other markets, Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 slipped 0.3 per cent to 6,063.60 and South Korea’s Kospi edged up 0.5 per cent to 2,201.48. Shares were mostly higher in Southeast Asia.

ENERGY: US benchmark crude rose 65 cents to USD53.75 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It rose 1.3 per cent to settle at USD53.10 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, the standard for international oil prices, gained 97 cents to USD63.39 per barrel in London.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 110.66 yen from 110.50 yen on Tuesday. The euro strengthened to USD1.1314 from USD1.1285.