US shares climb to new highs on Ukraine ceasefire talks

<p>US stocks rose today after reports of a possible ceasefire in Ukraine.</p>

US stocks rose today (September 3rd) as reports of a ceasefire in Ukraine boosted global markets.

Russian President Vladimir Putin confirmed that he and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko had agreed to the outlines of a ceasefire between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian rebels fighting in eastern Ukraine.

However, Ukraine, the US and Europe are accusing Putin of backing pro-Russian rebels with troops and equipment. Russia has denied this accusation.

Vladimir Putin said today he is hoping for a peace agreement to be reached between Ukraine and pro-Russian rebels by Friday, the BBC reports.

He urged both sides to stop military action in eastern Ukraine, adding that his views and those of his Ukrainian counterpart were very close. Mr Poroshenko said a "ceasefire process" has been agreed, but Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk said that any plan from Mr Putin should not be trusted.

The S&P 500 added 0.2 per cent to 2,005.52 at 10:23 ET in New York. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 0.3 per cent, to 17,116.49, while the Nasdaq Composite Index lost 0.1 per cent. 

“If we can remove one international geopolitical risk, that’s going to provide a boost to the market,” Bill Schultz, chief investment officer at McQueen, Ball & Associates in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, told Bloomberg. “That puts a calmer, less volatile market environment in place in the near-term.”

US shares were also boosted by new data showing orders at US factories rose in July, as expected, due to a surge in contracts for commercial aircraft, the Commerce Department said.

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