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Stocks open higher...Employers add 213,000 jobs...China responds to US tariffs

July 6, 2018

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks are opening higher on Wall Street following a solid jobs report, keeping the market on track for a weekly gain after two weeks of losses. The gains came despite an escalation in trade tensions as the U.S. imposed tariffs on Chinese goods and China responded in kind. Investors were pleased to see that U.S. employers kept up a brisk pace of hiring last month, without having to hike wages that much.

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. employers added 213,000 jobs in June, in a sign of confidence despite a looming trade war with China. The Labor Department says the unemployment rate rose to 4.0 percent from 3.8 percent as more people began looking for work. Average hourly pay rose just 2.7 percent from a year earlier. The low jobless rate has yet to force employers to offer higher wages in order to fill job openings.

BEIJING (AP) — China says it has filed a second complaint to the World Trade Organization over the United States’ move to impose tariffs on Chinese goods. Washington today imposed 25 percent duties on $34 billion of imports from China, the first in a series of possible increases that President Donald Trump says could affect up to $550 billion of Chinese goods. China retaliated with tariffs on a similar amount of goods. China’s commerce ministry said Washington had “ignited the biggest trade war in economic history.”

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia says it has raised tariffs on some U.S. imports in response to the U.S. move to impose tariffs on foreign steel and aluminum. Economic Development Minister Maxim Oreshkin said in a statement that additional tariffs ranging from 25 to 40 percent have been applied to some road construction equipment, oil and gas equipment, metal processing instruments, drilling equipment and optical fiber.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. trade deficit dropped in May to the lowest level in 19 months as U.S. exports rose to a record level. But the trade gap between the United States and China increased sharply, underscoring the economic tensions between the world’s two biggest economies. The Commerce Department says the May trade deficit — the difference between what America sells and what it buys in foreign markets — fell 6.6 percent to $43.1 billion. It was the smallest imbalance since October 2016.

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