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Ahead of the talks, Chinese officials have indicated that the topics they're willing to discuss have narrowed considerably, Bloomberg reports, citing people familiar with recent meetings. The Chinese delegation reportedly won’t be looking for commitments on reforming Chinese industrial policy or government subsidies, taking one of the Trump administration's key demands off the table.
All three of the major averages swung between gains and losses before closing lower. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost nearly 100 points or 0.37 percent. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq fell 0.45 percent and 0.33 percent, respectively.
|I:DJI||DOW JONES AVERAGES||28015.06||+337.27||+1.22%|
|I:COMP||NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX||8656.528802||+85.83||+1.00%|
The report came out just before a National Association for Business Economics survey of 51 forecasters showed respondents expect U.S. gross domestic product growth to slow to 2.3 percent this year from 2.9 percent in 2018.
General Motors shares were lower after talks with the United Auto Workers took a turn for the worse, hitting a snag over product commitments for U.S. factories.
|GM||GENERAL MOTORS COMPANY||35.54||+0.23||+0.65%|
Elsewhere, General Electric shares finished little changed after the conglomerate announced it would freeze its pension plan for 20,000 employees. GE says the move will reduce its pension deficit by about $5 billion - $8 billion and net debt by approximately $4 billion - $6 billion.
|GE||GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY||11.10||+0.31||+2.87%|
AT&T shares gained after "Joker" raked in $93.5 million at box office this past weekend, breaking several records along the way. "Joker" was made by AT&T's Warner Bros. division.
Data showed German industrial orders fell slightly more than expected in August. European markets were higher with Britain's FTSE leading the advance, up 0.3 percent.
In Asia, Japan's Nikkei fell 0.2 percent. Markets in China and Hong Kong were closed for a holiday.
FOX Business' Ken Martin contributed to this article.