US open: Stocks on track for seven-day winning streak
Wall Street trading again began on a positive note on Tuesday, with the Dow looking to extend its winning streak out to seven days despite Donald Trump threatening to slap more tariffs on China if President Xi Jinping refused to meet him at this month's G-20 meeting in Japan.
As of 1510 BST, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was ahead 0.40% at 26,167.53, while the S&P 500 had gained 0.58% to 2,903.48 and the Nasdaq opened 0.87% firmer at 7,891.21.
The Dow opened 60.02 points higher on Tuesday, following on from Monday's performance which saw the index close 78 points higher.
Investors seemingly brushed-off comments made late on Monday by Trump, when he threatened China with a further hike in tariffs if President Xi Jinping refused to meet with him at the upcoming G20 summit in Japan.
In an interview with CNBC on Monday, Trump said that tariffs on $300bn-worth of Chinese goods would come into force immediately if there was no meeting at the summit scheduled for 28-29 June.
"The China deal is going to work out. You know why? Because of tariffs," Trump said.
"Right now, China is getting absolutely decimated by companies that are leaving China, going to other countries, including our own, because they don’t want to pay the tariffs."
With eyes still firmly focused on Asia, White House National Security Adviser John Bolton said a third summit meeting between Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un was "entirely possible."
"We're ready when they are," Bolton said. "Any time they want to schedule it."
Still on Trump, the President claimed the US was at a disadvantage compared to other major currencies as other central banks continue to keep interest rates lower than the Federal Reserve.
"The Euro and other currencies are devalued against the dollar, putting the US at a big disadvantage," Trump tweeted, adding the Fed doesn't have "a clue".
Trump also said in a separate tweet the States had low inflation, calling it "a beautiful thing".
On the data front, the National Federation of Independent Business' small business optimism survey rose to a seven-month high in May, with companies increasing capital spending plans, indicating firms remained confident that economic growth would continue.
The optimism index increased 1.5 points to 105 on more upbeat views of the economy, employment, capital outlays and sales - a markedly different outcome to the 1.5-point decline predicted by analysts.
"Uncertainty levels remain high but owners are focused on a very busy Main Street," wrote authors William Dunkelberg and Holly Wade.
"The surge in optimism was supported by solid gains in reported capital spending, hiring, inventory investment and profit trends."
Elsewhere, US producer prices increased for a second straight month in May, driven by an uptick in hotel accommodation costs and gains in an array of services, indicating a steady pickup in underlying inflation pressures.
Producer prices excluding food, energy and trade services rose 0.4% last month, according to the Labor Department, matching April's gain. Core PPI increased 2.3% in the 12 months through May after rising 2.2% in April.
In terms of corporate news, accountants H&R Block rose 5% in early trade after topping revenue and profit estimates in its fourth quarter, while Beyond Meat slumped 14% after analysts at JP Morgan cut their rating on the stock from overweight to neutral, citing valuation concerns.
Women's apparel retailer Chico's FAS opened 14% despite falling short on same-store sales estimates, while JetBlue rallied after analysts at Citi issued a bullish note on the airline.