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US stocks end mostly higher but in a mixed mode
(09:56, 13 Sep 2018)

U.S. stocks closed mostly higher but on a mixed mode on Wednesday, 12 September 2018 with the S&P 500 and the Dow bouncing back from lows. However, the Nasdaq's effort to build on its recent gains hit a wall as shares of chip makers sunk and the unveiling of Apple's new product lineup didn't result in share pop for the world's most-valued company.

The S&P 500 index Sedged up 1.03 points to 2,888.92, less than 0.1%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 27.86 points, 0.1%, to 25,998.92. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite Index shed 18.24 points, or 0.2%, to 7,954.23.

Only three out of the S&P 500's 11 sectors ended lower with technology falling 0.5% while financials dropped 0.8% and utilities fell 0.1%.

Apple rolled out iPhone XS and XS Max with extended battery life as well as a special model equipped dual-Sim cards just for China, suggesting that the tech company is doing as much as it can to remain competitive in one of the most coveted markets in the world. However, the news did little to revive Apple shares which slid 1.2%.

Trade sentiments were earlier affected by concerns that clashes between the U.S. and China could lead to slack in demand for the metal. Thus far tit-for-tat tariff disputes between Washington and Beijing have supported overall gains in the U.S. dollar, pressuring commodities that are typically priced in the currency.

The ICE U.S. Dollar Index eased by 0.5%, but has climbed about 2.9% year to date.

But there were reports on Wednesday that the U.S. is reaching out to China for a new round of trade discussions, ahead of the Trump administration's plans to place more tariffs on Chinese imports.

Early Wednesday, data showed that the U.S. producer-price index declined by 0.1% last month, contrary to the 0.2% increase expected by mrket. The drop in wholesale prices was the first since February 2017, but the booming U.S. economy has produced enough inflation to push the Fed into a somewhat more aggressive posture.

The policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee is set to conclude a two-day meeting on Sept. 26, with expectations that the FOMC will lift rates by a quarter of a percentage point.

Bullion prices ended higher at Comex on Wednesday, 12 September 2018. Gold futures ended higher on Wednesday, as a pullback in the dollar on the back of a potential new round of trade talks between the U.S. and China lifted prices for the metal to the highest finish in two weeks.

December gold added $8.70, or 0.7%, to settle at $1,210.90 an ounce. December silver added 1% to $14.293 an ounce.

Crude Oil futures settled higher on Wednesday, 12 September 2018 as a hefty decline in domestic crude supplies and uncertainty tied to the energy impact from Hurricane Florence combined to lift U.S. prices past $70 a barrel.

The global benchmark crude price, meanwhile, touched a high above $80 a barrel—levels it hasn't settled at since December 2014.

October futures on West Texas Intermediate crude, the U.S. benchmark, rose $1.12, or 1.6%, to settle at $70.37 a barrel.

The threat of Florence to the Carolinas and Virginia increased in recent days as the storm has grown over the Atlantic, prompting evacuation orders for more than 1 million people ahead of landfall for the major hurricane, which is expected to approach the coast of the Carolinas on Thursday.

As per EIA, U.S. crude production eased back by 100,000 barrels last week to 10.9 million barrels a day. The data followed a monthly report Tuesday from the agency that cut the forecast for 2018 and 2019 output. Gasoline stockpiles rose 1.3 million barrels for the week, while distillate stockpiles climbed by 6.2 million barrels.

Looking ahead, investors will receive the August Consumer Price Index, weekly Initial Claims, and the August Treasury Budget on Thursday.

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