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US stocks mixed as Trump again sharpens trade rhetoric

US stocks mixed as Trump again sharpens trade rhetoricNEW YORK: Wall Street stocks were mixed early Friday as strong earnings from Microsoft and other companies competed for attention with fresh provocations from President Donald Trump on trade and the central bank.

About 20 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was at 25,033.58, down 0.1 percent.

The broad-based S&P 500 slipped less than 0.1 percent to 2,803.29, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.2 percent to 7,844.06.

Microsoft jumped 3.2 percent after reporting a 10 percent rise in quarterly profit to $8.8 billion behind strong revenue gains in internet search ads, gaming, Windows and other key businesses.

Others companies that advanced after reporting results included Honeywell International, Schlumberger and Intuitive Surgical.

But Trump again stirred the pot on trade, telling CNBC in an interview that he was willing to expand the trade war with China yet further by adding tariffs to all US imports from that country.

On Twitter, Trump accused China and the European Union of manipulating their currencies to promote their exports at the expense of the US.

Trump’s latest moves suggest the US-China trade dispute “could be a protracted affair,” said Briefing.com analyst Patrick O’Hare.

“If the market truly believed, however, that tariffs were imminent on the full basket of imported Chinese goods, one can rest assured that there would be a major setback in the futures market that isn’t being seen this morning.”

Copyright AFP (Agence France-Press), 2018

Source: Brecorder

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