US stocks hit record closing highs again on Friday and the S&P 500 registered its biggest weekly percentage gain since early September after data showed a rise in consumer spending and investors continued to be optimistic about developments in the US-China trade dispute.

President Donald Trump claimed progress on issues from trade to North Korea and Hong Kong after speaking with Chinese President Xi Jinping, dispelling fears of another escalation in the two countries’ trade war.

The S&P 500 also hit a seventh straight intraday all-time high in its longest streak of record intraday highs since October 2017, and the Nasdaq ended with gains for an eighth session in a row. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 78.13 points, or 0.28 per cent, to 28,455.09, the S&P 500 gained 15.85 points, or 0.49 per cent, to 3,221.22 and the Nasdaq Composite added 37.74 points, or 0.42 per cent, to 8,924.96.

The S&P 500 rose for a fourth straight week, gaining 1.7 per cent for the week, its biggest weekly gain since early September. Consumer spending, a key to US economic growth and a major focus for investors, rose 0.4 per cent in November, adding to a string of upbeat data that have helped put a damper on recession fears, which dogged markets earlier this year.


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