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Global Stocks Rise With U.S.-China Trade Talks in Focus

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02/11/2019 | 05:38am EST

By Akane Otani

Global stocks mostly rose Monday as investors await the upcoming round of trade negotiations between the U.S. and China.

The Stoxx Europe 600 advanced 0.9%, lifted by the performance of shares in commodity and technology companies.

Asian stocks were mixed, with the Shanghai Composite rallying after reopening for the Lunar New Year holiday, while indexes in Australia and India ended lower.

Investors are set for the latest round of trade talks between Washington and Beijing, with U.S. trade representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin expected to arrive in the Chinese capital sometime on Monday.

The talks could spark fresh volatility for financial markets. Stocks rose in January on fresh hopes that the U.S. and China would be able to carve out a trade deal, but some of that optimism appeared to lose steam last week as investors parsed a stream of downbeat economic data.

Data Monday showed U.K. gross domestic product grew last year at the slowest pace since 2012. The British pound fell to session lows following the report, recently trading down 0.3% against the U.S. dollar. The FTSE 100--whose multinationals tend to benefit from a weaker pound--jumped 1.1%.

"There's this belief that this is going to very quickly resolve itself, and I think the reality is that there are very complicated long-term issues on the trade relationship between the two most powerful economies around the world," said Jonathan Golub, chief U.S. equity strategist at Credit Suisse.

While economic growth in the U.S. still looks relatively steady, Mr. Golub cautioned that an unexpected breakdown in trade talks remain a major market risk.

"I'm actually quite optimistic about the broad backdrop -- but that doesn't mean that there's no risk," he said.

Corporate news drove swings in individual stocks on Monday.

Gold miner Acacia Mining rose 0.4% after breaking out to a profit in 2018, while online food delivery service Just Eat jumped 1.9% after a major shareholder urged it to seek a merger.

Later Monday, investors are expected to get earnings reports from Loews and Restaurant Brands, the parent company of Burger King, Tim Hortons and Popeyes.

U.S. stock futures pointed to a higher opening, with S&P 500 futures rising 0.4% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average futures adding 0.3%. Changes in futures don't necessarily reflect moves after the opening bell.

Elsewhere, the Shanghai Composite jumped 1.4% to a two-month high, while Japan's Nikkei Stock Average was shut for a holiday and Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 0.6%.

Write to Akane Otani at akane.otani@wsj.com

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
CHINA-SHANGHAI COMP -1.37% 2682.39 End-of-day quote.7.39%
DJ INDUSTRIAL 1.74% 25883.25 Delayed Quote.9.05%
FTSE 100 INDEX 0.28% 7234.11 End-of-day quote.0.00%
HANG SENG -1.94% 27863.12 Real-time Quote.9.94%
NASDAQ 100 0.47% 7055.1793 Delayed Quote.10.94%
NASDAQ COMP. 0.61% 7472.4101 Delayed Quote.11.93%
NIKKEI 225 -1.13% 20900.63 Real-time Quote.5.62%
S&P 500 1.09% 2775.6 Delayed Quote.9.53%
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