Markets rise as US and China agree to high-level trade talks
Talks aim to end trade dispute
China and the United States agreed to hold high-level trade talks in Washington next month as hopes rose of an end to the escalating trade war.
The US began imposing 15% tariffs on a range of Chinese imports on Sunday, including consumer goods, while China retaliated with new duties on US crude oil.
President Trump plans to increase the tariff rate to 30% from the 25% duty already in place on $250 billion worth of Chinese imports from 1 October.
Confirmation of the talks lifted world markets. The Shanghai composite index surged 1.8% and Japan’s Nikkei added 2.4% after US markets closed higher. The Dow Jones was up 0.91% and S&P 500 rose by 1.08%.
The announcement followed better news elsewhere. Hong Kong withdrew a contentious extradition bill that sparked recent protests and political turmoil in Italy appeared to be easing. Hong Kong shares erased early losses to rise 0.4%, although distrustful citizens say protests over democratic rights will continue and one hedge fund manager said it remains tense.
In the UK, the reduced likelihood of a No Deal Brexit helped lift the London Stock Exchange. The FTSE 100 closed 0.59% higher while the FTSE 250 was 0.8% higher.