US stocks gain as White House warms to further stimulus measures

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  • US stocks moved higher Friday on continued hope that fiscal stimulus negotiations would lead to a deal prior to the election.
  • House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin are set to talk today amid continued stimulus negotiations.
  • The resumption in stimulus talks comes after President Donald Trump reversed his view of no deal and instead now favors a large stimulus deal, according to reports.
  • Another round of fiscal stimulus would likely include direct payments to Americans as well as aid to the airline industry, among other things.
  • Watch major indexes update live here.

US stocks climbed on Friday after the White House signaled that it is indeed interested in passing a comprehensive fiscal stimulus deal prior to the upcoming November elections, according to reports. 

The move comes after Trump called off stimulus negotiations via tweet earlier in the week and instead called for a skinny version of stimulus that would have included aid to the airline industry and direct payments to Americans.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin are set to resume talks on a potential stimulus package later on Friday.

Here’s where US indexes stood shortly after the 9:30 a.m. ET market open on Friday:

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A report from the Wall Street Journal that AMD was in advanced talks to acquire Xilinx helped boost technology stocks on Friday. Xilinx surged as much as 17% on the news.

The economic recovery in the U.K. is showing signs of slowing after it reported August GDP growth of 2.1%, well below the expectations of 4.6%.

Goldman Sachs upgraded General Electric to “buy” and set a $10 price target on the potential of a COVID-19 vaccine boosting its aviation business. 

Gold rose as much as 1.5%, to $1,923.03 per ounce.

Oil traded lower. West Texas Intermediate crude fell as much as 1.3%, to $40.65 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, fell 1.1%, to $42.85 per barrel, at intraday lows.

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Ministry of Interior 3 outlines emergency measures for PWA to counter flooding

Ministry of Interior 3 has assigned the Provincial Waterworks Authority (PWA) to prepare a plan to handle heavy floods, flash floods, rainstorms, and mud slides. The Ministry also ordered 234 PWA branches across the country to closely monitor the situation, arrange water disposal measures, clean canals in high-risk areas, and collaborate with public and private sectors to immediately provide water supply to support the public suffering from flooding and related disasters.

Dr. Songsak Thongsri, Deputy Minister of Interior, revealed that Thailand has been severely affected by the northern and upper northeastern monsoons as well as southeastern depression covering the upper part of Gulf of Thailand, triggering flash floods, flood runoff, rainstorms, and mud tides. Therefore, 234  PWA offices across the country have been instructed to closely monitor Yom River, Nan River, and other areas in peril and provide assistance in the form of water drainage and canal dredging, particularly in city areas. He added that in case of heavy rain or flash floods causing disruptions, the public is assured of continuing to have access to clean and safe water supply.  

Mr. Kritsada Sunkhamani, PWA Deputy Governor (Technical Affairs), added that the PWA is committed to providing support to the public and has already coordinated cooperation from public and private sectors to prepare rescue personnel, water supply trucks, and equipment to serve the public immediately and effectively. 

Those seeking water supply assistance, please call PWA Contact Center 1662.

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House Democrat offers measures to block Trump’s payroll tax deferral

A House Democrat on Friday introduced two measures in an effort to block President TrumpDonald John TrumpNetanyahu privately condoned US arms sale plan with UAE: report Trump denies report he called U.S. service members buried in France ‘losers’, ‘suckers’ Jim Carrey pens op-ed comparing Trump to Michael Corleone in ‘The Godfather’ MORE‘s initiative to defer payroll taxes.

Rep. John Larson John Barry LarsonSenate Democrats take step toward vote on overturning Trump’s payroll-tax deferral Conservatives urge Trump to take unilateral action to suspend payroll tax collection House Dems introduce bill to require masks on planes and in airports MORE (D-Conn.), the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee’s Social Security subpanel, introduced a bill to nullify IRS guidance implementing the Social Security payroll tax deferral. He also introduced a Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution to overturn the IRS guidance.

Larson introduced the measures along with several other lawmakers, including Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard NealRichard Edmund NealThe Hill’s 12:30 Report: First Kennedy to lose a Massachusetts election The Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – Markey defeats Kennedy; Trump lauds America’s enforcers in Wisconsin Neal beats back primary challenge from progressive Alex Morse in Massachusetts MORE (D-Mass.). The House members introduced the measures after Senate Democrats also launched an effort to overturn the guidance, which implements a memo Trump signed last month.

Senate Minority Leader Charles SchumerChuck SchumerSchumer calls for accountability in Daniel Prude death in Rochester Top Democrats press Trump to sanction Russian individuals over 2020 election interference efforts Fauci says he ‘would not hesitate for a moment’ to take coronavirus vaccine MORE (D-N.Y.) and Senate Finance Committee ranking member Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenHillicon Valley: Russia ‘amplifying’ concerns around mail-in voting to undermine election | Facebook and Twitter take steps to limit Trump remarks on voting | Facebook to block political ads ahead of election Top Democrats press Trump to sanction Russian individuals over 2020 election interference efforts On The Money: Deficit to reach record .3 trillion | Senate Democrats push to overturn Trump’s payroll-tax deferral | Private sector adds 428K workers in August as job growth slows MORE (D-Ore.) on Wednesday sent a letter to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) asking for a determination about whether the IRS guidance is a rule for purposes of the CRA.

If the government watchdog determines that the guidance is a rule for CRA purposes, Senate Democrats would be able to force a vote on the Senate floor on a resolution to overturn the guidance. But the measure would face an uphill battle given the Republican majority in the chamber.

A spokesperson for Larson said there hasn’t been a response yet from GAO.

Under the IRS guidance, employers can stop withholding employee-side Social Security taxes through the end of the year for workers making under $4,000 biweekly. The money would then be collected by increasing the amount of taxes withheld from workers’ paychecks in the first few months of 2021.

The federal government is

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