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Wall Street eyes higher open on tariff exemption talks


By Sruthi Shankar

(Reuters) - Wall Street was set to open higher on Thursday as fears of a global trade war ebbed following signs that Donald Trump's proposed hefty import tariffs on and aluminum could exclude key trading partners.

Markets fell sharply on Wednesday following the resignation of Gary Cohn, a strong advocate of free trade, on concerns the move would make it more easier for Trump to push ahead with his plans.

But Wall Street's main indexes recovered after a said Trump's tariffs plan may include "potential carve-outs for and based on national security, and possibly other countries as well."

"Anything that would suggest a little bit of a roll back from the tariffs is viewed as positive," said Scott Brown, at in St. Petersburg,

Trump said in a tweet on Thursday he would hold a meeting at 3:30 p.m. ET over his planned tariffs and that the must show flexibility toward its allies.

The plan has faced strong opposition from most of key partners, with and warning they would respond in the event of a trade war with the

By 8:31 a.m. ET, Dow were up 10 points. rose 5.75 points and were up 32.25 points.

Among stocks, soared 17 percent after agreed to buy the for $54-billion deal. shares slipped 5.6 percent.

fell 5 percent after the issued a disappointing full-year profit forecast.

rose 3.3 percent as sales at established stores topped analysts' estimates for the holiday shopping quarter.

A Labor Department report showed initial jobless claims rebounded from a more than 48-year low last week, but the trend continued to point to robust labor market conditions.

A comprehensive reading on jobs and wage is expected on Friday. The average hourly earnings is expected to slow to 2.8 percent in February on an annualized basis, from 2.9 percent in January.

Investors are worried that higher wages could lead to faster interest rate increases by the Federal Reserve and make borrowing expensive for companies.

(Reporting by in Bengaluru; additional reporting by Parikshit Mishra; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, March 08 2018. 19:40 IST