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Global Stocks Post Tepid Gains As Investors Dismiss Tariff Threats

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12/03/2019 | 05:31am EST

By Anna Isaac

Global stocks edged up Tuesday as investors began to discount the significance of President Trump's moves to open up fresh fronts in his continuing trade war.

Futures linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average drifted up 0.1%. The pan-continental Stoxx Europe 600 gauge advanced 0.4%. Trading across Asia was mixed, with the Shanghai Composite Index ending the day up 0.3% while Japan's Nikkei 225 gauge fell 0.6%.

The White House proposed tariffs against $2.4 billion of French imports in response to the European nation's new digital-services tax, which it said unfairly targets U.S. tech companies such as Apple and Alphabet's Google. But the U.S. trade representative's office said it would accept public comments through at least Jan. 14 before moving forward with the levies.

Investors are growing weary of trade-policy announcements from the U.S., said James Athey, senior investment manager at Aberdeen Standard Investments. "During an election year, there'll be pressure not to do harm to the equity market, so people think that means some threats are relatively empty."

The threat to impose levies on French products came within hours of Mr. Trump saying he would revive tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Brazil and Argentina, a move that caught investors off-guard on Monday and weighed on U.S. stocks.

Meanwhile, Brent crude, the global benchmark for oil prices, climbed 0.6% as it extended a rally that began Monday. That comes ahead of a meeting in Vienna later this week by members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries as well as a group of nations led by Russia, with markets betting that the oil producers will strike an accord to extend production cuts.

Later in the day, software maker Salesforce.com will report earnings after markets close in the U.S.

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
ALPHABET -0.01% 1342.89 Delayed Quote.28.51%
APPLE INC. 0.58% 268.48 Delayed Quote.69.22%
CHINA-SHANGHAI COMP 0.10% 2917.32 End-of-day quote.16.79%
DJ INDUSTRIAL -0.10% 27881.72 Delayed Quote.19.52%
EURO / ARGENTINE PESO (EUR/ARS) -0.07% 66.252 Delayed Quote.53.56%
EURO / BRAZILIAN REAL (EUR/BRL) 0.01% 4.5977 Delayed Quote.3.27%
LME ALUMINIUM CASH -0.91% 1750 End-of-day quote.-5.81%
LONDON BRENT OIL 0.06% 64.18 Delayed Quote.16.84%
NASDAQ 100 -0.10% 8354.292492 Delayed Quote.32.66%
NASDAQ COMP. -0.07% 8616.183466 Delayed Quote.30.46%
NIKKEI 225 -0.08% 23391.86 Real-time Quote.16.69%
S&P 500 -0.11% 3132.52 Delayed Quote.24.96%
STOXX EUROPE 600 -0.17% 404.64 Delayed Quote.20.64%
STOXX EUROPE 600 NR -0.17% 872.9 Delayed Quote.24.17%
US DOLLAR / ARGENTINE PESO (USD/ARS) 0.02% 59.739 Delayed Quote.59.25%
US DOLLAR / RUSSIAN ROUBLE (USD/RUB) 0.09% 63.5145 Delayed Quote.-8.28%
WTI 0.07% 59.1 Delayed Quote.29.85%
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