By Herbert Lash
NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. and European stocks jumped, the dollar strengthened and Treasury prices rose on Tuesday after the United States said it would delay tariffs on some Chinese products, easing concerns that a protracted trade war would harm global growth.
The Trump administration will delay imposing a 10% tariff on certain Chinese goods, including laptops and cell phones, that had been scheduled to start next month, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said.
Equity, debt and currency markets sharply reversed course minutes after Wall Street opened for trade on news from Hong Kong about a call Chinese Vice Premier Liu He held with U.S. officials, according to China’s Commerce Ministry.
Liu spoke with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Tuesday evening, a ministry statement said.
Shares of Apple Inc, which makes iPhones and MacBooks in China, rose almost 5%.
“The news today is obviously good news. Risk appetite has improved drastically,” said Candice Bangsund, a portfolio manager and global asset allocation strategist at Fiera Capital in Montreal.
“The last few weeks have been dominated by a reduced appetite in risk. Investor fragility and sentiment have been rattled by all of these macro events,” she said, referring to unrest in Hong Kong, Italy and the peso crash in Argentina.
A global re-acceleration of growth should occur later this year as major central banks cut interest rates and recent economic data proves better than where markets have traded, Bangsund said.
Graphic: Biggest tail risks – https://tmsnrt.rs/2YLSe3U
The benchmark S&P 500 index rose more than 1.5% and the Nasdaq almost 2% on the news. Major stock bourses in Europe also rose, with the Euro STOXX index of eurozone shares closing 0.92% higher.
Major equity indices had tumbled roughly 5% since late July on growing concerns the ongoing U.S.-Chinese trade spat would slam global growth and fester unresolved until after U.S. presidential elections in November 2020.
Interactive graphic of a Reuters poll on 2018 global stock market forecasts: http://tmsnrt.rs/2nHJiJ9
Markets also had been lower, with gold earlier hitting a more than six-year high, as the unrest in Hong Kong and a rout in the Argentine peso drove investors already unnerved by the trade war into havens such as bullion, bonds and the yen.
Graphic: Argentina primary election interactive – https://tmsnrt.rs/2MYvyX2
The yen benefits in moments of geopolitical uncertainty and during economic downturns. The U.S. dollar rose 1.22% to 106.56 yen per dollar.
Graphic: Yen versus U.S. dollar – https://tmsnrt.rs/2MYxgb6
Yields on the benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury notes hit session highs, while those on 30-year Treasury bonds rallied from more than three-year lows. Traders earlier were bracing for 30-year yields to sink to a record low below 2.08%.
The 10-year Treasury fell 10/32 in price to push its yield up to 1.6744%.
Oil prices rose more than 3% on the trade news.
Brent futures rose $2.74, or 3.6%, at $61.31 a barrel, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude rose $2.06 to $56.99 a barrel.
Prior to Tuesday’s gains, Brent had traded down more than 20% since hitting its year high in April.
The Argentine peso was less volatile, trading in a tighter range, down 5.85% at 55.30 to the dollar.
Spot gold dropped 0.6% to $1,501.47 an ounce.
(Reporting by Herbert Lash; Editing by Nick Zieminski)