US STOCKS-Wall St sinks as Trump hints at delay in trade deal with China

  • Reuters
  • Stock Market News
US STOCKS-Wall St sinks as Trump hints at delay in trade deal with China
Credit: © Reuters.

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* Trump says no deadline for China deal

* Main indexes set for worst day in nearly two months

* Trade-sensitive chip index hits over one-month low

* Indexes fall: Dow 1.58%, S&P 1.16%, Nasdaq 1.24% (Changes comment, updates market action)

By Arjun Panchadar

Dec 3 (Reuters) - Wall Street fell more than 1% and the benchmark S&P 500 hit a near one-month low on Tuesday, as comments from President Donald Trump and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross stoked fears of a significant delay in resolving a trade dispute with China.

Speaking to reporters in London where Trump was attending a meeting of NATO leaders, he raised the possibility of the trade deal being delayed until after the U.S. presidential elections in November 2020. told CNBC that planned tariffs on Chinese imports will be imposed on Dec. 15 unless there is some real reason to postpone, such as substantive progress in talks. of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors were trading lower, with tech heavyweights Apple Inc AAPL.O and Microsoft Corp MSFT.O weighing the most.

The trade-sensitive Philadelphia Semiconductor index .SOX dropped 2.4% to hit an over one-month low.

Tuesday's declines added to the pullback in the previous session, from record highs hit last week, on hopes that the two sides will hammer out a "phase one" deal soon, and signaled a rough start to the month.

"This is sort of a last-minute negotiation tactic," said Robert Pavlik, chief investment strategist and senior portfolio manager at SlateStone Wealth LLC in New York.

"If the Dec. 15 tariffs go into effect, then I think people start thinking that this could have additional ramifications on a 'phase-one' ever getting done."

The S&P 500 is still up about 23% this year, helped by interest rate cuts from the Federal Reserve, even as conflicting headlines on trade have caused some volatility.

At 11:31 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI was down 438.25 points, or 1.58%, at 27,344.79, the S&P 500 .SPX was down 36.21 points, or 1.16%, at 3,077.66 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC was down 106.03 points, or 1.24%, at 8,461.96.

Shares of Audentes Therapeutics Inc BOLD.O more than doubled in value after Japan's Astellas Pharma Inc 4503.T said it would buy the U.S. drugmaker for about $3 billion in cash. Steel Holding Corp AKS.N rose 5% after miner Cleveland Cliffs Inc CLF.N agreed to buy the steel maker for about $1.1 billion in an all-stock deal. Shares of Cleveland-Cliffs slumped 11.4%. issues outnumbered advancers for a 2.45-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 2.34-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded one new 52-week high and four new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 17 new highs and 53 new lows.

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