Wall St advances, gold rises as stimulus talks progress
By Stephen Culp NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks joined their global counterparts in the black, and were on track for weekly gains on Friday as ongoing fiscal aid talks and growing expectations for Democratic election victories revived hopes over economic stimulus. Gold surged and the dollar dropped as investors bet on the increased probability of forthcoming coronavirus relief
By Stephen Culp
NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks joined their global counterparts in the black, and were on track for weekly gains on Friday as ongoing fiscal aid talks and growing expectations for Democratic election victories revived hopes over economic stimulus.
Gold surged and the dollar dropped as investors bet on the increased probability of forthcoming coronavirus relief.
Wrangling in Washington over pandemic aid has dominated markets this week, which began with President Donald Trump halting negotiations on a comprehensive aid package.
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin continue to hammer out a deal, even as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell expressed doubt that consensus could be reached before the election.
But a report from the Wall Street Journal said Mnuchin was drafting a proposal worth $1.8 trillion, closer to the $2.2 trillion package Pelosi has floated.
"It's 'will they or won't they?', but the market is maybe becoming less concerned about the timing of a stimulus package," said Chuck Carlson, chief executive officer at Horizon Investment Services in Hammond, Indiana.
"I think there's going to be a stimulus package within the next two months and probably sooner," Carlson added.
Trump expressed a desire to return to the campaign trail a week after he announced that he had contracted COVID-19 , but aides said Trump was unlikely to hold any in-person events until Monday at the earliest.
Reuters/Ipsos polls show Trump's approval rating plummeting, with Americans steadily losing confidence in his handling of the pandemic, while Democratic challenger Joe Biden makes gains in several key swing states.
"The market is saying there's a good chance (fiscal relief) might not happen until after the election," said Carlson, adding "if there's a 'blue wave' the package will be more significant."
Next week, investors' attention will shift to reporting season, and analysts now see third quarter S&P 500 earnings, in aggregate, falling by 21% year-on-year, according to Refinitiv.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> rose 137.69 points, or 0.48%, to 28,563.2, the S&P 500 <.SPX> gained 26.55 points, or 0.77%, to 3,473.38 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> added 128.74 points, or 1.13%, to 11,549.72.
European stocks posted a second straight week of gains on upbeat earnings forecasts, while investors paid close attention to fiscal aid talks in the United States.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index <.STOXX> rose 0.55% and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe <.MIWD00000PUS> gained 0.77%.
Yields on longer-dated Treasury bonds reversed earlier dips to edge higher.
Benchmark 10-year notes
The 30-year bond
Crude prices fell after an offshore oil worker strike in Norway ended eased supply pressures, but production was reduced in the United States due to Hurricane Delta.
U.S. crude futures
The dollar dropped against a basket of world currencies on fiscal relief optimism and the growing likelihood of a Biden victory.
The dollar index <.DXY> fell 0.59%, with the euro
The Japanese yen strengthened 0.39% versus the greenback at 105.63 per dollar, while Sterling
Gold prices jumped as the increased likelihood of stimulus pushed investors to bullion as a hedge against possible inflation.
(Reporting by Stephen Culp; Additional reporting by Tom Arnold)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.