Traders wearing masks work, on the first day of in person trading since the closure during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., May 26, 2020. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid
(Reuters) – The S&P 500 was slightly higher on Friday in choppy action as investors absorbed U.S. President Donald Trump’s comments on China.
Stocks initially extended losses after Trump said China broke its word on ensuring the autonomy of Hong Kong and said the United States is terminating its relationship with the World Health Organization.
Increased tensions between the United States and China are taking some shine off the market as it was about to wrap up another month of strong gains.
China-U.S. relations are “definitely a concern for investors. What keeps them from being too worried is that it’s an election year,” said Rick Meckler, partner in Cherry Lane Investments, a family investment office in New Vernon, New Jersey.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI rose 33.72 points, or 0.13%, to 25,434.36, the S&P 500 .SPX gained 10.86 points, or 0.36%, to 3,040.59, and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC added 83.08 points, or 0.89%, to 9,452.07.
Trump had warned of a tough response to China’s move, and the S&P 500 opened weaker on Friday amid the concerns over U.S.-China tensions.
Despite worsening relations between the world’s two largest economies, expectations of a quick economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic have driven the S&P 500 .SPX up more than 30% from its March lows.
Reporting by Caroline Valetkevitch in New York; Additional reporting by Medha Singh and Devik Jain in Bengaluru; Editing by Leslie Adler