June 27, 2019 / 1:17 PM / 4 months ago

US STOCKS-Wall St set to post small gains at open as investors eye G20 summit

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* Xi to present Trump with terms for settling trade fight -WSJ

* U.S., China agree tentative trade truce - SCMP

* Boeing falls as FAA cites new flaw on 737 MAX

* Walgreens rises on profit beat

* Futures: Dow flat, S&P up 0.27%, Nasdaq up 0.51% (Updates prices, adds comments)

By Shreyashi Sanyal

June 27 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were set to open slightly higher on Thursday, as investors stayed away from making big bets amid conflicting reports on trade talks between the United States and China at the upcoming G20 summit.

The South China Morning Post reported that the United States and China were laying out an agreement that would help avert the next round of tariffs on an additional $300 billion of Chinese imports.

“The trade truce is what the market needs right now,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities in New York.

“The message is that they’re not going to escalate further from here on and we’re now in neutral territory. What investors are hoping for now is that the meeting diffuses some of the tension.”

However, a Wall Street Journal report that Chinese President Xi Jinping planned to present President Donald Trump with a set of terms Washington should meet before Beijing is ready to settle their trade dispute tempered optimism.

Semiconductor companies, which have a sizable revenue exposure to China, were trading higher, with Advanced Micro Devices Inc, Nvidia Corp and Intel Corp up between 0.2% and 1.8%.

Boeing Co fell 3.1% and was the biggest decliner among the 26 Dow components trading premarket, after Reuters reported that the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration identified a new flaw in the planemaker’s grounded 737 MAX jets.

At 8:53 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 1 points, or 0%. S&P 500 e-minis were up 8 points, or 0.27% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 39 points, or 0.51%.

Investors are hoping for a resolution of the trade war, which has rattled investors who have ditched shares for the safety of bonds and gold this year and pushed the Federal Reserve to signal an interest rate cut as soon as next month.

Among other stocks, Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc gained 4.6% after the drugstore chain beat analysts’ expectations for quarterly profit.

Ford Motor Co rose 1.2% after the carmaker said it will have cut 12,000 jobs in Europe by the end of next year to try to return the business to profit.

Conagra Brands Inc tumbled 6.7% after the packaged food company’s quarterly sales and profit fell short of analysts’ estimates.

Data showed, U.S. economic growth accelerated in the first quarter, but the export and inventory boost to activity masked weakness in domestic demand, some of which appears to have prevailed in the current quarter. (Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva)

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