Global stocks finished mixed Wednesday following solid Chinese growth data while weakness in IBM and pharma stocks weighed on Wall Street.
Chinese data estimated firstquarter growth at 6.4 percent, betterthan-expected and a sign government stimulus was helping to boost the world’s second-biggest economy, agency reports.
The news follows a number of readings indicating stability in China, with factory activity, exports, new loans and inflation all improving — tempering concerns about a slowdown that could have a major impact on the global economy.
“From Beijing’s perspective, this set of data should show that the policy reset in mid-2018 from deleverage to growth support is starting to yield results,” said Tai Hui, chief market strategist for Asia-Pacific at JP Morgan Asset Management.
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Meanwhile, a Federal Reserve report described the US economy as expanding at a “slight-to-moderate pace,” adding that the outlook was clouded by labor shortages and trade uncertainty.
Analysts are awaiting the next steps in the months-long US and China trade talks, with US President Donald Trump on Wednesday saying he expected the talks would be “successful.”
Citing an unnamed source, The Journal said US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer was expected to travel to Beijing for a new round of face-to-face talks tentatively set for the week of April 29.