May 14, 2018 / 1:12 PM / 10 months ago

US STOCKS-Wall St set for gains as U.S.-China trade tensions ease

* Optical components makers rise after Trump’s ZTE decision

* Xerox falls after scraping $6.1 bln deal with Fujifilm

* NXP jumps on report China resumes Qualcomm deal review

* Futures up: Dow 0.22 pct, S&P 0.14 pct, Nasdaq 0.19 pct (Adds comments, details, updates prices)

By Sruthi Shankar

May 14 (Reuters) - Wall Street was set to open higher on Monday on signs of easing U.S.-China trade tensions after President Donald Trump softened his stance on ZTE Corp, pledging to help the Chinese technology company “get back into business, fast”.

Trump’s comments on Sunday came ahead of trade talks between Chinese Vice Premier Liu He and U.S. officials this week as they seek to resolve trade disputes.

The U.S. Commerce Department last month banned American companies from selling to the Chinese tech company for violating an agreement.

Trump’s unexpected announcement helped drive big gains in shares of U.S. suppliers to ZTE. Optical components maker Acacia Communications jumped 16.1 percent, while Oclaro and Lumentum Holdings rose between 8.75 percent and 5 percent.

Also helping the mood was news that China had resumed its review of chipmaker Qualcomm’s proposed $44 billion takeover of NXP Semiconductors. NXP surged 9.6 percent and Qualcomm 2.2 percent.

“Some of the headlines point to signs that Trump might be watering down his tough talks on trade,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities in New York.

At 8:46 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 54 points, or 0.22 percent. S&P 500 e-minis were up 3.75 points, or 0.14 percent and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 13.5 points, or 0.19 percent.

Wall Street’s main indexes posted solid gains last week, helped by a surge in oil prices, easing inflation fears and Apple’s rally that took it close to $1 trillion in market capitalization.

The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed their 100-day moving averages, a key technical level, for the first time in nearly a month.

“It looks like the markets want to move up, and there seems to be a rosier outlook for geopolitics especially North Korea,” Cardillo said.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday that Washington would agree to lift sanctions on North Korea if the country agrees to completely dismantle its nuclear weapons program.

Among decliners, Xerox fell 4.2 percent after the U.S. photocopier giant scrapped a planned $6.1 billion deal with Fujifilm Holdings.

Perrigo slid 5.1 percent after the drugmaker said it expected to get a complete response letter from U.S. regulators on a generic version of ProAir inhalation aerosol. (Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva)

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