September 24, 2021

Earnings lift stocks, sterling dips as more Brexit news to come


NEW YORK (Reuters) – Stocks on world markets eked out small gains on Tuesday after some upbeat corporate results and talk of progress in China-U.S. trade talks, while sterling weakened as investors awaited further news on Britain’s eventual exit from the European Union.

Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., October 21, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

U.S. long-dated Treasury yields dropped from five-week highs, in line with falls in yields globally, amid investor uncertainty.

On the trade front, China and the United States have achieved some progress in their trade talks, Vice Foreign Minister Le Yucheng said on Tuesday, adding that as long as both sides respected each other, any problem could be resolved.

That followed upbeat comments on Monday by the White House. U.S. President Donald Trump said efforts to resolve the U.S.-China dispute were going well, while White House adviser Larry Kudlow said tariffs on Chinese goods scheduled for December could be withdrawn if talks go OK.

Strong corporate earnings since last week have provided some respite to equity markets, which were rattled over the past few months by geopolitical worries and a slowing global economy.

“It’s been a pretty good season so far, but I always caution people the early announcers have a tendency to be better than the later ones, so those numbers come down throughout the season,” said Randy Frederick, vice president of trading and derivatives for Charles Schwab in Austin, Texas.

On Wall Street, Procter & Gamble Co (PG.N) lifted the consumer staples index .SPLRCS after the company raised full-year forecasts and beat Wall Street estimates.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI rose 45.29 points, or 0.17%, to 26,872.93, the S&P 500 .SPX gained 4.95 points, or 0.16%, to 3,011.67 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC dropped 3.83 points, or 0.05%, to 8,159.16.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.10% and MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe .MIWD00000PUS gained 0.17%.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is battling to push legislation through the House of Commons that will enact his last-minute Brexit deal.

Lawmakers vote around 1800 GMT on the 115-page Withdrawal Agreement Bill and then vote on the government’s extremely tight timetable for approving the legislation.

Sterling GBP= was last trading at $1.2916, down 0.32% on the day.

The Canadian dollar fell 0.03% versus the greenback at 1.31 per dollar. The ruling Liberal government of Justin Trudeau held on to power, but with a minority government after a closely fought election.

Chilean markets recovered from Monday’s losses, with investors comforted by President Sebastian Pinera’s willingness to listen to demands by protesters after violence over the weekend hammered markets last session.

Chile’s peso CLP= was up slightly after a 2.7% slump on Monday – its worst day in more than six years.

Reporting by Caroline Valetkevitch in New York; Additional reporting by Susan Mathew, Shreyashi Sanyal and Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru, and Wayne Cole in Sydney; Editing by Alex Richardson and Matthew Lewis

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Caroline Valetkevitch