Dow climbs as tariffs seen less damaging

The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed Wednesday as traders digested the latest economic data while the continuing tit-for-tat trade war between China and the U.S. weighed on investor sentiment.

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The Dow added 158.80 points, or 0.61 percent, to 26,405.76. The S&P 500 was up 3.64 points at 2,907.95. The Nasdaq Composite ticked 6.07 points lower to 7,950.04.

Data released Wednesday included August housing starts, which came in at an annual rate of 1.28 million units, up 9.2 percent year over year and higher than analyst estimates. August housing permits, a proxy for future housing starts, came in at an annual rate of 1.23 million units, below the 1.31 million consensus estimate.

America’s current account deficit, which measures how much more a country imports than it exports, fell 17 percent to $101.5 billion in the second quarter.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
I:DJIDOW JONES AVERAGES28050.93+139.63+0.50%
SP500S&P 5003158.82+17.19+0.55%
I:COMn.a.n.a.n.a.n.a.

Meanwhile, traders are still assessing the continued back and forth between the U.S. and China on trade.

President Trump on Monday escalated the U.S.-China trade war by announcing new tariffs on about $200 billion of Chinese imports. The move, which had been expected since at least the weekend, imposes 10 percent tariffs on the products. The levies will climb to 25 percent beginning Jan. 1, 2019.

China quickly responded with tariffs on $60 billion in U.S. exports.

FOX Business’ Ken Martin contributed to this article.