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Microsoft and Apple Drive Wall Street Higher as Trade Conflict Abates

U.S. stocks hiked Monday, helped by gains in Apple, Microsoft and Merck & Co, as investors put aside worries about the US-China trade battle.

Shares of Apple surged 2.4% after Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said sales of the corporate’s newest iPhones have been off to a strong beginning, while JP Morgan raised its forecast for cargo volumes. Apple is struggling to reverse contracting iPhone sales amid moderate global demand for smartphones.

Also supported by a 0.9% rise in Microsoft, the S&P 500 technology index included 1.0%, leading other sectors.

Sentiment on Wall Street got an extra boost after White House trade adviser Peter Navarro dismissed reports that the U.S. administration was contemplating delisting Chinese firms from U.S. stock exchanges as “faux news.”

Concerns related to those stories had sent the S&P 500 and Nasdaq to an over three-week low on Friday.

“This idea of utilizing various kinds of levers that impact trade discussions is something that we will get accustomed to,” said Phil Blancato, chief executive officer of Ladenburg Thalmann Asset Management.

U.S.-listed shares of Chinese companies Alibaba Group and Baidu surged 0.8% and 1.5%, respectively.

The next sitting of high-stakes trade discussions between the world’s two most prominent economies is scheduled for this month.

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