US stocks surge as US, Canada, Mexico reach trade deal

Stocks surged Monday as Canada and the U.S. reached a trade deal that also includes Mexico, and key changes at the top of major corporations boosted investor sentiment.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rallied 192.9 points, or 0.73 percent, to 26,651.21. The S&P 500 rose 10.61 points, about 0.3 percent, to 2,924.59. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite dipped 9.05 points, or 0.11 percent, to 8,037.3.

Equities also got a lift from GE, whose shares popped about 7 percent after the struggling conglomerate replaced John Flannery as CEO with H. Lawrence Culp Jr. In addition, shares of Tesla surged about 17 percent on news that company founder Elon Musk has agreed to step down as chairman for no less than three years.

The United States and Canada confirmed Sunday they had reached a deal on a "new, modernized trade agreement," which is designed to replace the 1994 NAFTA.

In a joint statement the two nations said the new deal would be called the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). The agreements reportedly boost U.S. access to Canada's dairy market and protect Canada from possible U.S. autos tariffs.

GE, the struggling conglomerate, said Monday it has replaced CEO John Flannery with H. Lawrence Culp Jr., effective immediately. Flannery has been CEO for less than two years. Besides Culp, who served as the chief executive of Danaher Corp. for 14 years, the company also announced Thomas W. Horton as lead director. Culp, 55, and Horton, 57, have been on the GE board since April.

GE shares rose despite the company also saying it is preparing to take an approximately $23 billion noncash goodwill charge for its ailing GE Power business.

Tesla shares rose after the Securities and Exchange Commission settled securities fraud charges over the weekend with CEO Elon Musk, who will remain at the head of the company, while stepping down as chairman of the electric-car maker. Musk and Tesla will also be required to pay $20 million in penalties each.

The eccentric billionaire came under investigation by the SEC after he abruptly tweeted in August that he was considering taking Tesla private at $420 per share and had already secured the funding.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 39087.38 +90.99 +0.23%
SP500 S&P 500 5137.08 +40.81 +0.80%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 16274.941582 +183.02 +1.14%

In Friday’s trading, stocks ended the final day of the third quarter and month little changed despite declines in shares of Facebook and Tesla.

The S&P 500 gained 7.2 percent in the third quarter, its best performance since the end of 2013, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 9 percent. The Nasdaq Composite rose 7.1 percent, extending its streak of gains to nine consecutive quarters. All three major indexes are within about 1 percent of their all-time highs.

Late Friday, Facebook dropped over 2 percent after disclosing 50 million accounts were breached. CEO Mark Zuckerberg, on a call, said the company is working with the FBI.

U.S. oil futures settled above $75 a barrel, their highest level since November 2014.