December 10, 2019 / 4:01 PM / 2 months ago

US STOCKS-Wall St rises on possible tariff delay hopes

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* U.S., China planning for delay of Dec tariff - WSJ

* Autozone up after profit beat, peers rise

* Netflix drops after Needham downgrade

* Indexes up: Dow 0.11%, S&P 500 0.17%, Nasdaq 0.32% (Updates to open)

By Shreyashi Sanyal and Medha Singh

Dec 10 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose on Tuesday after a report that the United States and China were planning to delay a new round of tariffs set to kick in on Dec. 15.

With the trade war continuing to take a toll on global growth, markets have been hoping for a possible delay in tariffs and looking for positive headlines on trade talks between the two sides.

“It’s probably the best the market can expect right now,” said Robert Pavlik, chief investment strategist and senior portfolio manager at SlateStone Wealth LLC in New York.

“It allows the U.S. and China to continue to negotiate and to reach a phase one trade agreement.”

The Wall Street Journal also reported that officials from both sides hinted at extending trade talks.

Apple Inc, shares of which are often sensitive to news on trade, gained 1.1%. The broader S&P 500 technology sector rose 0.5%.

The communication services sector slipped, weighed down by Netflix Inc’s 2.1% fall after Needham downgraded the company’s shares to “underperform”.

The Federal Open Market Committee’s two-day policy meeting kicks off on Tuesday and investors are expecting updates from the central bank on its 2020 economic outlook.

The S&P 500 is up 25% so far this year, boosted by the Federal Reserve’s interest rate cuts and some relief over corporate profits.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 30.50 points, or 0.11%, at 27,940.10, the S&P 500 was up 5.24 points, or 0.17%, at 3,141.20 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 27.36 points, or 0.32%, at 8,649.19.

Democrats in the House of Representatives announced formal charges against President Donald Trump that accuse him of abusing power and obstructing Congress.

Shares in Autozone Inc jumped 8% after the auto parts retailer beat quarterly estimates for profit. Shares of peers Advance Auto Parts and O’Reilly Automotive also rose.

Masco Corp rose 0.6% after KeyBanc raised its rating on the home improvement and building product maker’s shares to “overweight”.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 1.20-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and by a 1.34-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded 15 new 52-week highs and one new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 37 new highs and 33 new lows. (Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal and Medha Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva)

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