Signs of progress in trade talks prop up Wall Street
Friday 22/February/2019 - 05:43 PM
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange
U.S. stocks rose on Friday on signs of progress in the ongoing trade talks between the United States and China، but a plunge in shares of Kraft Heinz hit the consumer staples sector Reuters said.
Top trade negotiators from the two countries haggled over the details of a set of agreements aimed at ending their trade war، just one week before a Washington-imposed deadline for a deal expires and triggers higher U.S. tariffs.
President Donald Trump and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He are set to meet at the Oval Office later in the day.
The benchmark S&P 500 index’s recent run of gains was halted on Thursday after a batch of grim economic data، including a surprise fall in new orders for key U.S.-made capital goods. However، the index is still at more than two-month highs.
“The market has shifted from economic worries encountered yesterday to the possibility of a breakthrough in the trade talks،” said Peter Cardillo، chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities in New York.
“We’re recovering from yesterday’s sell-off and the main focus is trade.”
Kraft Heinz Co tumbled 26.9 percent، weighing the most on the S&P 500 index، along with a 1.9 percent fall in class B shares of the company’s controlling stakeholder، Berkshire Hathaway Inc.
The packaged food company posted a quarterly loss، disclosed an SEC probe and wrote down the value of its iconic Kraft and Oscar Mayer brands.
The S&P consumer staples sector slipped 0.49 percent، the most among the 11 major sectors، followed by a 0.29 percent drop in financials.
Kraft Heinz rivals General Mills، Conagra Brands and Kellogg Co fell between 3.7 percent and 4 percent.