Futures Soar on Positive U.S.-China Trade Developments

The holiday week is kicking off with some good news for investors: U.S. stock index futures signaled a higher opening on Monday after China said it will slash tariffs on a wide range of products.

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were trading 58 points higher, while Nasdaq futures were up nearly 29 points. The S&P 500 also was trending higher.

In a move to boost imports amid a slowing economy, China announced today it will implement temporary import tariffs on more than 850 goods, ranging from frozen pork to some types of semiconductors, beginning on Jan. 1. That compares with last year’s temporary cut in duties on 706 products.

China’s finance ministry said in a statement that the tariff changes were made to “increase imports of products facing a relative domestic shortage, or foreign specialty goods for everyday consumption.” Calculations by Bloomberg indicate that the tariff cuts will affect nearly $400 billion worth of foreign goods sold to China annually, out of a total import bill of $2 trillion.

The tariff news comes as President Donald Trump revealed over the weekend that the U.S. and China are close to signing their Phase One trade pact, which would reduce some U.S. tariffs in exchange for more Chinese purchases of American farm products and other goods. “We just achieved a breakthrough on the trade deal and we will be signing it very shortly,” the president said on Saturday at a Turning Point USA event in Florida.

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