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Stocks Close Higher as US Officials Call Trade Talks 'Constructive'

4:49PM ET 5/10/2019 MT Newswires
Stocks closed higher for the first time this week, as the market turned positive after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said trade talks on Friday with China were "constructive."

Overnight, the US began to impose higher tariffs on Chinese imports.

The gains began to firm after President Donald Trump said on Twitter that the US and China have had "candid and constructive conversations." Earlier in the day, Trump said the there was "absolutely no need to rush" to reach a deal, sending shares lower at the time.

Materials rose nearly 1.3% as Ball (BLL) jumped 3.1%.

Consumer staples, which includes retailers that are dependent on Chinese imports for their inventory, rose nearly 1.2%, led higher by Walmart's (WMT) 2.4% gain. Blue chips Procter & Gamble (PG) and Coca-Cola (KO) each rose 1.7%.

Utilities were the best-performing sector, finishing more than 1.7% higher. PPL (PPL) rose 2.6% while Southern Co. (SO) gained 1.9%. Dominion Energy (D) advanced 1.7%.

Regeneron (REGN) lost 3.5%, helping push the healthcare sector lower by almost 0.1%. Mylan (MYL) lost 2.6% while Incyte (INCY) fell 1.6%.

Uber Technologies (UBER) lost 7.6% on the ride-hailing company's first day of trading. Rival Lyft (LYFT) fell 7.4%.

Symantec (SYMC) dropped 12.5% after the cybersecurity company's chief executive resigned and it provided weaker-than-expected revenue guidance.

In economic news, consumer prices rose at a slower pace in April than analysts were expecting while food prices contracted for the first monthly decline in almost two years, according to Labor Department data.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose more than 0.4% to close out the week 2.1% lower. The Standard & Poor's 500 gained 0.4%, ending the five-day period down 2.2%. The Nasdaq Composite ended slightly higher to finish the week 3% lower.