Stocks finished higher on Tuesday, as investors assessed developments on the trade front. The Dow rose 55 points, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite both added 0.2%. The major averages each rose to another all-time high, with the S&P 500 notching its 12th record closing level in less than a month.
Overnight, China’s Ministry of Commerce revealed Washington and Beijing “reached consensus on properly resolving relevant issues” during a phone conversation with top officials. Comments from President Trump that the U.S. was nearing a preliminary trade deal further boosted investor sentiment. On the data front, an update from the Conference Board showed consumer confidence unexpectedly fell in November, sending the gauge lower for a fourth straight month. Wholesale inventories rebounded 0.2% in October from the prior month’s downwardly revised 0.7% decline. A separate release showed advance goods trade deficit narrowed in October. Another report showed new home sales dipped 0.7% in October, but the prior month’s reading was upwardly revised to a 4.5% increase, marking the best two-month pace in more than 12 years. Treasuries advanced with the yield on the 10-year note off two basis point to 1.74%.
Eight of 11 S&P 500 sectors finished in positive territory. Retail earnings remained in focus, with Best Buy gaining 9.7% following its quarterly results that included a top and bottom line beat and a boost to its full-year outlook. Dick’s Sporting Goods surged 17.9% after its comparable-store sales jumped more than double analyst’s forecasts. Dollar Tree slumped 16.8% after reporting that tariffs are expected to pressure fourth-quarter profit margins.