Microsoft Corp shares climbed 2.46 per cent, making the stock among the biggest boosts to each of three major indexes after the technology giant won the Pentagon’s $10 billion cloud computing contract, beating Amazon.com Inc.

After rising as much as 0.71 per cent to 3,044.08, the benchmark S&P closed up 0.56 per cent at 3,039.34, topping the record high of 3,025.86 hit on July 26, while the Nasdaq ended the session less than 5 points below its closing high. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended less than 1 per cent away from its record closing level.

President Donald Trump said on Monday he expected to sign a significant part of a trade deal with China ahead of schedule but did not elaborate on the timing, building on optimism from Friday when Washington said it was ‘close to finalising’ some parts of a trade deal. Economic data shows the trade war between the world’s two largest economies has begun to take a toll on both countries, leading to worries about a global slowdown.

Global central banks have responded by easing monetary policy. The Federal Reserve is expected to follow that trend at its two-day policy meeting beginning on Tuesday, with high expectations that it will cut interest rates for a third time this year. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 132.25 points, or 0.49 per cent, to 27,090.31, the S&P 500 gained 16.79 points, or 0.56 per cent, to 3,039.34 and the Nasdaq Composite added 82.87 points, or 1.01 per cent, to 8,325.99.

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