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13-Feb2019

US markets end higher on tentative deal to avert government shutdown

The US markets ended higher with gains of around one and half percent on Tuesday, with the S&P 500 finishing above its 200-day moving average for the first time in 46 days, marking its longest sojourn under the key trend-line since March 2016, on the account of optimism lawmakers will manage to avoid another government shutdown after negotiators reached a tentative agreement on border security. Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Richard Shelby, R-Ala., a lead Republican negotiator, said the two sides have reached an agreement in principle. The agreement reportedly includes $1.4 billion for physical barriers on the border, well short of the $5.7 billion President Donald Trump has demanded for construction of a border wall. Democrats have also purportedly agreed to drop their demand to reduce the number of illegal immigrants who can be detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Further, support also came as optimism grew over a potential trade deal between the US and China. Bilateral trade negotiations entered a second day in Beijing, with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer due to arrive Thursday for more high-level discussions. Meanwhile, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said the economy is strong at the national level and highlighted the fact that unemployment is near multidecade lows.

Dow Jones Industrial Average surged 372.65 points or 1.49 percent to 25425.76, S&P 500 gained 34.93 points or 1.29 percent to 2744.73 and Nasdaq was up by 106.71 points or 1.46 percent to 7414.62.


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