The Dow and S&P 500 notched record closing highs on Thursday as the latest signs of progress in US-China trade relations relieved investors, but a report raising fresh worries about the outlook for a deal limited the day’s gains. China said it had agreed with the United States to remove tariffs in phases, while state-owned Xinhua News Agency said Beijing was also considering removing restrictions on poultry imports.

But indexes pared gains in afternoon trading after a Reuters report, citing sources, said that the White House’s plan to roll back China tariffs faces internal opposition and that no final decision has been made yet. An interim US-China trade deal is expected to include a US pledge to scrap tariffs scheduled for 15 December. The latest batch of earnings offered some upbeat news.

The S&P 500 technology index ended up 0.7 per cent, with shares of Qualcomm Inc up 6.3 per cent after it forecast current-quarter profit above analysts’ estimates. Together with Qualcomm, other chipmakers, which have a sizeable exposure to China, also rose, propping the Philadelphia Semiconductor index up 0.7 per cent. The trade-sensitive industrials sector finished up 0.2 per cent.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 182.24 points, or 0.66 per cent, to 27,674.8, the S&P 500 gained 8.4 points, or 0.27 per cent, to 3,085.18 and the Nasdaq Composite added 23.89 points, or 0.28 per cent, to 8,434.52.

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