US stocks gain on report of possible Mexico tariff delay

Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange, June 4, 2019.
Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange, June 4, 2019.PHOTO: REUTERS

NEW YORK (AFP) - Wall Street stocks finished solidly higher for a third straight session on Thursday (June 6) following a report that the White House could delay tariffs on Mexican imports.

Major indices had been mildly positive through early afternoon but added to gains after Bloomberg reported that the United States could push back a plan to impose the tariffs next Monday to permit more time for talks on illegal immigration.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended at 25,720.66, up 0.7 per cent.

The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.6 per cent, settling at 2,843.49, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.5 per cent to 7,615.55.

Investor unease over trade has risen since US President Donald Trump announced a week ago that he would put tariffs on Mexican imports unless it did more to stem the flow of migrants at the south-western US border.

But investors welcomed the Bloomberg report, along with upbeat comments from Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard, who said talks with US officials at the State Department had yielded progress.

"Yes, I think we have advances today," Mr Ebrard told reporters after more than two hours of talks with mid-level US officials.


Thursday's gains marked the third straight day of increases after markets rallied on Tuesday and Wednesday on more dovish commentary from the US Federal Reserve.

Investors are also looking ahead to Friday's US jobs report. Analysts project the US added 180,000 jobs last month and that unemployment rose to 3.7 per cent from 3.6 per cent.