According to a brief statement from the Chinese Commerce Ministry, the two sides held an "extensive, in-depth, and detailed exchange" on trade issues, including structural factors. Such a move would significantly escalate the months-long trade war. The U.S. was represented by Deputy U.S. Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish while China was represented by Vice Commerce Minister Wang Shouwen.
The talks were the first face-to-face meetings since Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping agreed to suspend tariff increases during negotiations. Retailers sank after Macy's said its sales over the holidays were worse than expected, and airlines slumped after American gave a disappointing revenue forecast.
"Prices are coming off a bit with some investors feeling the gains may be excessive, but the bullishness especially from progress on trade negotiations will drive the market higher", Sungchil Will Yun, a commodities analyst at HI Investment & Futures Corp., said by phone. In public statements, aides such as Wilbur Ross, the U.S. commerce secretary, and Peter Navarro, a White House trade adviser, have played down the impact of the trade wars on markets, the USA economy and companies.
The discussions "went just fine", he said without elaborating.
The negotiations "enhanced mutual understanding and laid the foundation for resolving issues that each is concerned about", it said.
Meanwhile, the US and China wrapped up three days of mid-level trade talks on Wednesday, boosting the S&P 500 Index for a fourth day to the highest in nearly a month.
The US delegation included representatives from the departments of energy, agriculture, treasury and commerce.
Asian markets were mixed Thursday after USA and Chinese officials wrapped up three days of trade talks in Beijing without significant breakthroughs.
The USTR statement emphasised American insistence on "structural changes" in Chinese technology policy, market access, protection of foreign patents and copyrights and cyber theft of trade secrets.
The talks went ahead despite tensions over the arrest of a Chinese tech executive in Canada on USA charges related to possible violations of trade sanctions against Iran.
"We can confidently say that enough progress was made that the discussions will continue at a higher level", said Craig Allen, president of the U.S.More news: R. Kelly Criminal Investigation Allegedly Underway in Georgia Following Lifetime Docuseries
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Trump has said he would increase those duties to 25 percent from 10 percent if no deal is reached by March 2, and has threatened to tax all imports from China if it fails to cede to US demands.
A range of Fed policymakers said last month they could be patient about future interest rate increases and a few did not support the central bank's rate increase that month, minutes from their December 18-19 policy meeting showed. In recent weeks, China has showed some signs of flexibility or acceding to the American demands.
PRICE Futures Group senior analyst Phil Flynn on the outlook for oil prices and the impact on the USA soybean market from the tariff tensions with China.
China has repeatedly played down complaints about intellectual property abuses, and has rejected accusations that foreign companies face forced technology transfer.
The Chinese government has strong incentives to reach a deal.
The New York Times noted that the USA intends to maintain its tariffs placed on Chinese goods past year.
China is now America's largest goods trading partner with United States dollars 635.4 billion in total (two way) goods trade during 2017.
The truce came after the two sides imposed import duties on more than $300 billion of each other's goods.
USA treasury officials have made the case that market volatility is in part due to the tightening of U.S. monetary policy, and a result of the trade war with China.
"China is determined to bring the trade war to an end", The Economist has reported.