Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq End at Record Highs on Trade-Deal Hopes, Merger Activity

Stocks finished strong Monday, with the three major indexes ending at record highs, boosted by  trade optimism and a wave of merger deals.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 190.85 points, or 0.68%, to 28,066.47. The S&P 500 finished up 0.75% to 3,133.64, while the Nasdaq climbed 1.2% to 8,632.49. 

A statement from China that pledged major changes to the way it protects international property rights boosted hopes that a so-called phase one trade agreement could be reached before the end of the year.

China will reportedly issue new guidelines concerning Intellectual Property (IP) theft, while also increasing the possible penalties for such acts,” said Gorilla Trades strategist Ken Berman. “As the issue was considered one of the most important obstacles on the U.S.-Chinese negotiations, the reports suggesting an imminent ‘phase one' deal could be validated by the new rules.”

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