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US Stocks Keep Climbing as Trade War Fears Recede

Stocks in the U.S. are rising Thursday morning and major indexes in Europe are jumping as global markets continue to rally.

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks in the U.S. are rising Thursday morning and major indexes in Europe are jumping as global markets continue a rally that began late the previous day. Wall Street is getting more optimistic that a trade dispute between the U.S. and China, the two largest economies in the world, will be resolved without too much pain. Some of the biggest gains are going to technology companies, retailers and banks.

KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 index climbed 15 points, or 0.6 percent, to 2,660 as of 10 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 201 points, or 0.8 percent, to 24,465. The Nasdaq composite added 44 points, or 0.6 percent, to 7,086. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks rose 5 points, or 0.4 percent, to 1,537.

The Dow tumbled 501 points Wednesday morning after the U.S. and China each announced tariffs on about $50 billion in goods made by the other country. But stocks turned higher and the Dow finished with a gain of 230 points as officials in both countries reassured investors that they are willing to talk and aren’t rushing into a trade war that could hurt global economic growth and company profits.

After a plunge Monday and a big bounce back Tuesday, followed by a steep loss that turned into a big gain Wednesday, the S&P 500 is now up 0.7 percent this week.

COMING BACK: Big technology companies climbed early on. Apple gained $1.22 to $172.83 and Alphabet, Google’s parent company, rose $11.67 to $1,041.38. Those stocks mostly finished higher Wednesday after early losses. They have been the market’s biggest winners over the last year and have struggled during the recent round of turmoil because of trade worries and fears about increased government regulation for Facebook and other social media companies. Facebook, which slipped after it revealed that its privacy scandal might affect 87 million users, far more than the 50 million estimated earlier, jumped $5.27, or 3.4 percent, to $160.25.

Industrial companies recovered some of their losses from the day before. Boeing rose $4.34, or 1.3 percent, to $331.78 and Deere picked up $1.50, or 1 percent, to $150.07. Caterpillar, which made a small gain Wednesday, rose another $1.67, or 1.2 percent, to $146.85.

Retailers and consumer-focused companies built on their gains from the previous day. Amazon advanced $18.88, or 1.3 percent, to $1,429.45 and Netflix added $2.46 to $291.40. Nike picked up 34 cents to $68.76.

BONDS: Bond prices dipped. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.82 percent from 2.81 percent. The price of gold fell 0.7 percent to $1,330.80 an ounce.

Banks rose along with interest rates. JPMorgan Chase gained $1.27, or 1.1 percent, to $111.70 and Citigroup added 79 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $70.10.

DOGGIE DISH DEAL: J.M. Smucker is buying Ainsworth Pet Nutrition for $1.9 billion. Ainsworth’s brands include Rachel Ray’s pet food brand Nutrish as well as Better Than! and Dad’s. Smucker already owns Kibbles ‘n Bits and Meow Mix, and it’s just the latest purchase of a pet food company by a packaged food maker as they try to cope with slower sales. In February, General Mills agreed to buy Blue Buffalo Pet Products for $8 billion.

Smucker declined 39 cents to $123.31.

CONN CRUSHED: Furniture retailer Conn’s tumbled $5.33, or 14.9 percent, to $30.53 after it reported weaker-than-expected revenue and forecast a bigger decline in first quarter sales.

OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude climbed 62 cents, or 1 percent, to $63.99 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose 40 cents to $68.42 per barrel in London. Oil prices dropped Wednesday in part because investors were nervous that a trade war would slow down growth in the global economy, which would reduce demand for oil.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 107.01 yen from 106.74 yen. The euro fell to $1.2264 from $1.2280.

OVERSEAS: Britain’s FTSE 100 surged 1.3 percent and Germany’s DAX jumped 1.9 percent. France’s CAC 40 advanced 1.8 percent. Japan’s Nikkei 225 surged 1.5 percent and South Korea’s Kospi jumped 1.2 percent Markets in Hong Kong were closed for holidays.

AP Markets Writer Marley Jay can be reached at . His work can be found at jay

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