Dow futures jump more than 250 points after confirmation of US-China trade talks

U.S. stock index futures rallied Thursday after China confirmed it planned to hold trade talks with the U.S. in early October.

Around 7 a.m. ET, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures traded 256 points higher, indicating a gain of 264 points at the open. Futures on the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 were both higher.

The VanEck Vectors Semiconductor ETF (SMH) climbed 0.9% in the premarket as Advanced Micro Devices and On Semiconductor both gained more than 1%. Bank stocks such as J.P. Morgan Chase and Citigroup each traded more than 1% higher along with trade bellwethers Caterpillar and Boeing.

China’s Commerce Ministry issued a statement Thursday morning saying that Liu He, Beijing’s top negotiator on trade, had spoken with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.


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The two sides agreed to hold another round of trade negotiations in Washington, D.C., towards the beginning of next month, and consultations will be made in mid-September in preparation for the meeting, the statement said.

“Both sides agreed they should work together and take practical actions to create favorable conditions for the negotiations,” according to a CNBC translation of the statement.

The announcement came after the world’s two largest economies imposed new tariffs on each other’s goods at the start of the month, marking yet another escalation in the protracted trade war.

Previously, both sides had indicated they would meet in September.

On the data front, investors are likely to closely monitor a flurry of economic reports on Thursday.

The private sector ADP National Employment Report for August will be released at 8:15 a.m. ET, with the latest weekly jobless claims and second-quarter productivity and unit labor costs set to be released slightly later in the session.

A final reading of services Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for August, ISM non-manufacturing data for August, and factory orders for July will also be released early Thursday.

Shares of Slack, maker of the popular workplace messaging chat app, were slammed after the company issued its first earnings report as a public company, briefly dropping below the reference price from its direct listing.

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