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Overnight Markets: US stocks stage rebound on Fed minutes

Overnight Markets: US stocks stage rebound on Fed minutes

Wall Street rallied in late trade to end higher on Wednesday after the minutes from the Federal Reserve’s 2 May meeting suggested higher inflation may not result in faster interest rate hikes.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 52 points, or 0.21%, to 24,887, the S&P 500 gained nine points, or 0.32%, to 2,733 and the Nasdaq Composite added 48 points, or 0.64%, to 7,426.

Stocks were under pressure earlier as geopolitical and trade concerns continued to dent investor sentiment. But markets rebounded modestly after Fed minutes reassured investors that the central bank will not be too aggressive with raising interest rates.

Rate-sensitive S&P 500 utilities and real estate ended the day with the biggest percentage gains. Financials, which benefit from a rising rate environment, fell 0.6%.

Retailers were mixed, with Target sinking 5.7% after the retailer's quarterly profit rose less than expected.

Tiffany climbed 23.3% after the jeweler's quarterly results blew past estimates and the company raised its full-year profit forecast and announced a $1 billion buyback programme.

Ralph Lauren also soared, ending up 14.3% after the company's higher margins helped deliver a solid profit that beat analysts' estimates.

Also, Lowe's gained 10.4% after the home improvement retailer maintained its annual financial targets and billionaire investor Bill Ackman said his hedge fund had taken a roughly $1 billion stake in the company.

Elsewhere, Comcast Corp. declined 1.9% after the company said it was in the advanced stages of preparing an offer for the businesses that Fox is selling to Walt Disney Co., which was off 1.1%.

Avinger Inc. surged 73% after it said its Pantheris Lumivascular atherectomy system received clearance from the Food and Drug Administration.

In Asia, stocks traded lower on Thursday in morning session, with investors cautious over fresh trade-related developments as the trade dispute between the US and China remained in focus.

In Japan, the Nikkei 225 declined 1.12%. Down Under, the S&P/ASX 200 shed 0.22%. South Korea's benchmark Kospi, meanwhile, gave up early gains to track lower by 0.36%.

Greater China markets were narrowly mixed. The Hang Seng Index added 0.11% and on the mainland, the Shanghai composite hovered around the flat line.

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