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Trump Tweets Suggest a Trade Deal Could Be Waiting in the Wings

President Trump took to Twitter Friday morning to hint that a deal might be forthcoming in the trade dispute between the U.S. and China.

Earlier this morning Trump tweeted: “Good things are happening at China Trade Talk Meeting. Warmer feelings than in recent past, more like the Old Days. I will be meeting with the Vice Premier today. All would like to see something significant happen!”

About a half hour later, Trump tweeted again: “One of the great things about the China Deal is the fact that, for various reasons, we do not have to go through the very long and politically complex Congressional Approval Process. When the deal is fully negotiated, I sign it myself on behalf of our Country. Fast and Clean!”

It couldn’t be learned if an agreement would fully resolve the dispute or be characterized as a partial deal that paves the way for another agreement on the remaining issues down the road. Even a partial resolution would be a welcome advance compared with past talks that ended with little by way of progress.

Trump is set to meet with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He at the White House Friday at 2:45 p.m. ET. The Chinese vice premier led the delegation that arrived in Washington for a round of talks with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin.

The key point of contention for the U.S. is the protection of intellectual property assets–it has alleged that China steals IP, but that’s a larger issue that could be tabled for another time. Speculation began Thursday night that a partial deal could be in the works that delays the next increase in tariffs–set for Oct. 15 where Tranche 3 goods taxed at 25 percent see an increase to 30 percent–and forges a possible agreement from China to increase its agricultural purchases.

U.S. equity markets surged Friday after Trump’s tweets, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average rising 400 points in mid-morning trading.

Among the retail and apparel firms that saw large gains–all of which still have some manufacturing in China–were: Chico’s FAS Inc., up 8.8 percent to $3.59; Deckers Outdoor Corp., up 8 percent to $155.29; Kontoor Brands Inc., up 7.2 percent to $36.87; Qurate Retail Inc., up 6.4 percent to $10.19; Abercrombie & Fitch, up 6.3 percent to $15.53; American Eagle Outfitters Inc., up 5.9 percent to $15.30; Capri Holdings Ltd., up 5.7 percent to $29.87; Guess Inc., up 5 percent to $17.91; Limited Brands Inc., up 5.5 percent to $17.76.