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Stocks climb for 2nd straight day on U.S.-China trade optimism

Specialist Meric Greenbaum works at his post on

Specialist Meric Greenbaum works at his post on the floor of the NYSE on Tuesday. Photo Credit: AP / Richard Drew

Stocks closed broadly higher on Wall Street for the second straight day Thursday as the U.S. and China kicked off a new round of negotiations in their long-running trade war.

Technology companies and banks led the rally as investors turned hopeful that the 13th round of trade talks will bring both sides closer to ending the costly conflict between the world's two biggest economies.

Traders were encouraged after President Donald Trump said he would meet with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, who is leading Beijing's negotiating team, at the White House on Friday. He also said China wants to make a deal.

"It's really good that Trump is meeting him, because that increases the odds that some type of positive news may happen tomorrow," said Brad Bernstein, senior portfolio manager at UBS Global Wealth Management.

The S&P 500 rose 18.73 points, or 0.6%, to 2,938.13. The benchmark index had been up about 1% earlier in the day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 150.66 points, or 0.6%, to 26,496.67. It had been up as much as 257 points. The Nasdaq added 47.04 points, or 0.6%, to 7,950.78. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies picked up 5.90 points, or 0.4%, to 1,485.36.

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