Twitter to notify users exposed to Russian propaganda during U.S. elections

(Reuters) – Twitter Inc (TWTR.N), which is reviewing Russian interference during the 2016 U.S. elections, said on Friday it would notify some of its users whether they were exposed to content generated by a suspected Russian propaganda service.

The company said it would email 677,775 people in the United States who followed, retweeted or liked content from accounts associated with the Internet Research Agency (IRA) during the election.

The IRA is a Russian organization that according to lawmakers and researchers, employs hundreds of people to push pro-Kremlin content under phony social media accounts.

Twitter added that because it has already suspended these accounts, the relevant content is no longer publicly available on its platform.

Twitter executives on Wednesday told U.S. lawmakers that it may notify the users about the Russian propaganda.

The company in September said it had suspended about 200 Russian-linked accounts, and followed it by suspending adverts from media outlets Russia Today and Sputnik in October.

The top Democrat on the U.S. House of Representatives intelligence committee on Friday praised Twitter’s move and urged technology companies to keep looking into abuse of their platforms by Russia during the 2016 elections.

“The Committee’s open hearing last November with Twitter, Facebook and Google revealed the extent to which the Russians exploited vulnerabilities inherent in the openness of our society and social media platforms, and it is vital these companies are transparent with users who were likely exposed to Kremlin propaganda and disinformation,” Representative Adam Schiff said in a statement.

Senator Mark Warner, the ranking Democrat on the Senate intelligence panel, echoed this view, tweeting: “I’ve been tough with Twitter on this, but I‘m encouraged to see the company beginning to take responsibility and notify its users of Russia’s influence on its platform.”

Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru and Eric Walsh in Washington; Editing by Maju Samuel and Lisa Shumaker

Oil producers will cooperate beyond 2018, says Saudi Arabia

MUSCAT (Reuters) – Global oil producers are in agreement that they should continue cooperating on production after their deal on supply cuts expires at the end of this year, Saudi Arabia’s energy minister Khalid al-Falih said on Sunday.

It was the first time Saudi Arabia, the world’s top oil exporter, had publicly stated OPEC and non-OPEC producers would keep cooperating after 2018.

The exact mechanism for cooperation next year has not yet been decided, Falih said, but if oil inventories increase in 2018 as some in the market expect, producers might have to consider rolling the supply cut deal into next year.

“There is a readiness to continue cooperation beyond 2018… The mechanism hasn’t been determined yet, but there is a consensus to continue,” Falih said after a meeting of the joint ministerial committee which oversees implementation of the cuts.

The committee comprises Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Venezuela and Algeria, plus non-OPEC producers Russia and Oman. The United Arab Emirates was also present on Sunday as it holds the presidency of OPEC.

Before the meeting, Falih said extending the cooperation framework beyond 2018 wouldn’t necessarily mean sticking to countries’ current production targets.

The agreement was launched last January and Saudi Arabia has accounted for by far the largest share of the output cuts.

Falih said a deal on production levels after 2018 would be about “assuring stakeholders, investors, consumers and the global community that this is something that is here to stay. And we are going to work together.”

Kuwait’s oil minister Bakheet al-Rashidi said Sunday’s meeting focused on compliance with the current agreement on output cuts, and discussion of the deal’s future was expected to occur in June, when OPEC and other producers led by Russia are next scheduled to meet on oil policy.

Oman’s oil minister Mohammed bin Hamad al-Rumhi said producers would discuss in November whether to renew their supply agreement or enter a new type of agreement. Oman is in favor of a new deal, he said without elaborating.

Falih said the global economy had strengthened while the supply cuts had shrunk oil inventories around the world. As a result, the oil market was on course to rebalance towards the end of 2018 or in 2019, he said.

But he stressed that producers still had a lot of hard work ahead to restore the market to health, and it was uncertain whether the current pace of the drawdown in oil inventories would continue in months to come.

“We are entering a low demand period seasonally, and we have to let that pass and see how inventories look in the second half before we consider any alteration” to current policy, he said.

Falih and energy ministers from the UAE and Oman noted that the rise of the Brent oil price to three-year highs around $70 a barrel in recent weeks could cause an increase in supply of shale oil from the United States.

But both Falih and UAE minister Suhail al-Mazroui said they did not think the rise in prices would hurt global demand for oil.

OPEC has a self-imposed goal of bringing oil inventories in industrialized countries down to their five-year average. But Falih said that identifying the exact target for inventories had yet to be discussed by producers, and it might only become clearer in June.

“I don’t think that we are going to reach our target anytime soon, certainly not in the first half,” he told reporters before Sunday’s meeting.

”I think we have to identify more clearly what is the normal level because five-year average – which five-year? The longer we wait to reach that target, the more the running five-year average increases and represents bloated inventories.

“I think one of the things we need to define in the next few months, before we meet in June, is what is the real target more precisely, and that is work that still needs to be done, and we still need to reach a consensus.”

Falih said the overall compliance of OPEC and non-OPEC nations with the production cuts was 129 percent in December. The next meeting of the joint ministerial committee overseeing implementation of the cuts will be held in April in Saudi Arabia, an OPEC statement said.

Writing by Andrew Torchia; Editing by Susan Fenton

ADM pursues big ag merger with grain trader Bunge: source

CHICAGO/CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) – Top U.S. grain merchant Archer Daniels Midland Co (ADM.N) has proposed a takeover of Bunge Ltd (BG.N), according to a person familiar with the approach, which could set up a bidding war with Swiss-based rival Glencore Plc (GLEN.L).

Large grain traders that make money by buying, selling, storing and shipping crops have struggled in recent years with global oversupplies. Thin margins have squeezed core commodity trading operations, including those of ADM, Bunge, Cargill Inc [CARG.UL] and Louis Dreyfus Co [AKIRAU.UL], which together are known as the “ABCDs” and dominate the industry.

Consolidation is seen as one remedy. Glencore last year sought a tie-up with Bunge in what was viewed as a start of a wave of mergers and acquisitions in the industry.

Bunge, which rebuffed an acquisition offer from Glencore last year, might not follow up on ADM’s proposal, the source said, requesting anonymity because the approach is confidential. A standstill agreement prevents Glencore from making a new offer until next month, and Bunge is keeping its options open for now, the source added.

White Plains, New York-based Bunge operates in more than 40 countries and is Brazil’s largest exporter of agricultural products, while Chicago-based ADM says it has customers in 160 countries.

Bunge, which has a market capitalization of $9.79 billion, closed up 11.4 percent at $77.56 on Friday. ADM has a market cap of $22.64 billion.

ADM said it does not comment on “rumors or speculation,” while Bunge did not respond to requests for comment. Glencore was not immediately available for comment. The Wall Street Journal first reported on ADM’s interest in Bunge.

STRATEGY SHIFT?

Grain companies in recent years have expanded into higher-margin sectors, such as food ingredients and aquaculture, to offset weak results and wild swings in their traditional business of handling crops.

In 2014, ADM bought natural ingredient company Wild Flavors for about $3 billion in its biggest deal ever. The company has also expanded into handling healthy ingredients such as fruits, nuts and “ancient grains.”

“News of the ADM bid is a bit surprising given that ADM had been indicating the company’s strategic direction was more towards value-added rather the traditional commodities,” said Stephens Inc analyst Farha Aslam.

ADM is the most U.S.-focused of the major grain companies and a takeover would help it grow in South America, where Bunge is a major agricultural force.

ADM, which dates back to 1902, has tried to expand its international operations, in part to take advantage of growing demand from China. In 2013, Australia rejected its attempted $2.55 billion takeover of Sydney-based grain handler GrainCorp Ltd (GNC.AX) on concerns it could reduce competition.

Bunge was founded in Amsterdam 200 years ago. It moved its headquarters to South America as its operations grew in the region and relocated to New York ahead of an initial public offering in 2001.

HURDLES LOOM

Aslam estimated that fair value for Bunge in a takeover would be $90 to $95 per share, but Morningstar said the price could exceed $100.

Any tie-up would probably face stiff scrutiny from regulators and opposition from farmers who fear handing more market control to ADM could hurt wheat, corn and soybean prices.

The biggest overlap between ADM and Bunge in the United States is in grain origination and oilseeds processing, Aslam said. The companies would probably need to divest facilities in North America and also possibly in Europe, she added.

Aslam raised the possibility that ADM and Glencore could partner in a bid for Bunge to split up its operations.

“ADM would take the more value-added downstream businesses, and Glencore would own the more ag commodity businesses,” she said.

FARMERS’ WORRIES

An ADM-Bunge merger would also face opposition from farmer groups in key agricultural markets, including the United States, European Union, China, India and Brazil, said Erik Gordon, a professor at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business.

The companies’ relatively late move into the big-agriculture merger game, behind DowDuPont (DWDP.N), Nutrien Ltd (NTR.TO) and others, would make gaining regulators’ approval even tougher, Gordon said.

“When you’re the first one, there’s still more competition,” he said. “Once they’ve let a few through, they may have second thoughts.”

Grain farmers need five or six active buyers to get fair prices for their goods, but there are already only a handful, said Peter Carstensen, who teaches law at the University of Wisconsin at Madison.

“This is the kind of transaction that will screw farmers,” he said.

Illinois farmer Dan Henebry, who delivers corn and soybeans to ADM’s North American headquarters in Decatur, Illinois, said he was worried a takeover of Bunge could lead grain handlers to pay farmers less for their crops.

“We’ve had so many mergers,” Henebry said. “Less competition is not good.”

Reporting by John Benny in Bengaluru, Rod Nickel in Calgary, Alberta, Tom Polansek in Chicago, Chris Prentice and Greg Roumeliotis in New York and Diane Bartz in Washington; Writing by Peter Henderson and Anna Driver; Editing by Leslie Adler and Lisa Von Ahn

SoFi in talks with top Twitter exec about CEO position: WSJ

(Reuters) – Social Finance Inc (SoFi) is in discussions with Anthony Noto, a top Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) executive, to become the online lender’s chief executive, the Wall Street Journal reported on Saturday, citing sources.

Noto, Twitter’s chief operating officer, has been offered the CEO position at SoFi, the report said, and was expected to make a decision in the coming days.

SoFi, one of the most valuable private financial technology startups in the United States, has been without a CEO for a quarter of a year, since Mike Cagney stepped down amid a lawsuit that alleged that he presided over a hostile work environment for women.

Twitter on Saturday evening declined to comment and SoFi did not immediately respond to inquires by Reuters.

(This version of the story refiles to add slug for media clients. No changes in text.)

Reporting by Bernie Woodall in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Editing by Alistair Bell

Audi ordered to recall 127,000 vehicles over emissions: paper

FRANKFURT (Reuters) – Germany’s KBA automotive watchdog has detected illicit emission-control software in Audi’s (NSUG.DE) latest Euro-6 diesel models and has ordered a recall of 127,000 vehicles, Bild am Sonntag reported.

Audi, a unit of Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE), said in a statement that the models had been included in a voluntary recall of 850,000 diesel vehicles with V6 and V8 TDI engines announced in July.

“The engine control software for the vehicles in question will be completely revised, tested and submitted to the KBA for approval”, Audi said in its statement.

It did not confirm more details of KBA’s request.

Bild am Sonntag said road transport authority KBA had told Audi to respond by Feb. 2 on how it plans to update vehicle software controlling emissions, making sure the cars are unable to illegally manipulate emission controls.

Audi said it has been examining its diesel-fuelled cars for potential irregularities for months in close cooperation with the KBA.

“As part of this systematic and detailed assessment, the KBA has now also issued a notice regarding Audi models with V6 TDI engines,” the carmaker added.

In November, Audi announced a recall of 5,000 cars in Europe for a software fix after discovering they emitted too much nitrogen oxide, the polluting gas that parent Volkswagen concealed from U.S. regulators in its devastating 2015 “dieselgate” scandal.

Volkswagen was found in 2015 to have illegally manipulated engine software so that vehicles would meet nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions standards in laboratory testing but not in real-world conditions, where they could emit up to 40 times the permitted levels.

Several Audi models were affected and Audi has been accused in media reports of having devised the so-called defeat devices years earlier but not to have installed them in its vehicles at that time. Audi and Volkswagen have never commented on the matter.

Reporting by Arno Schuetze; Editing by Susan Fenton

Judge overseeing AT&T, Time Warner merger trial hears document dispute

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – ATT, owner of DirecTV, is asking for documents from a long list of companies as part of preparation for a trial to determine if they will be allowed to buy movie and TV show maker Time Warner, their lawyer Daniel Petrocelli said in a pre-trial hearing on Friday.

The Justice Department sued in November to stop ATT, the No. 2 U.S. wireless company, from buying Time Warner for $85 billion because of concerns that it could raise prices for rivals and pay-TV subscribers as well as hamper the development of online video. Trial is set for March 19.

Daniel Petrocelli, who represents ATT and Time Warner, said that his team had been unable to get data requested from third parties, who had said they no longer had some of it. He asked the government, which did have the data, to return it so it could be subpoenaed.

An attorney for DISH Network Corp at the hearing identified himself to Judge Richard Leon and offered to discuss the dispute but Leon declined.

The third parties included Verizon Communications, Comcast, Cox, DISH, Charter, Disney and Viacom, among others, a source close to the trial said after the hearing.

Leon expressed surprise at the problem.

“So, the only copy they had, they turned over to the government?” he said, calling the situation “rather extraordinary.”

Leon said that if no solution was found by noon on Monday, he would order the government to return the data to the companies so that they could then either comply with the subpoenas or fight them in court.

“I think that’s a sensible approach,” Petrocelli told the judge.

Fights over data are common during antitrust trials since companies that are subpoenaed frequently fear that their rivals’ executives will gain access to sensitive internal data.

For its part, a lawyer for the Justice Department, Peter Schwingler, said the government was barred from giving the data to ATT under the terms of the subpoena that they used to collect it.

Leon had given access to confidential information to the court, Justice Department lawyers and staff, service providers and ATT and Time Warner’s outside counsel.

A second government lawyer, Craig Conrath, said that he would request a stay if the U.S. Congress failed to fund the government and it shut down.

Leon said the trial would likely continue. “My natural inclination will be not to grant a stay,” he said.

The fate of the deal has been widely followed because U.S. President Donald Trump criticized it on the campaign trail in 2016 and has repeatedly attacked the reporting of Time Warner’s CNN news network. In November, Trump reiterated his opposition to the deal.

Reporting by Diane Bartz; Editing by Sandra Maler

FTC makes second request on Broadcom’s bid for Qualcomm

(Reuters) – The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has made a second request for information on chipmaker Broadcom Ltd’s $103 billion hostile bid for Qualcomm Inc, Broadcom said in a statement on Friday, a move that could indicate heightened antitrust scrutiny.

The FTC review is part of a process under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act to scrutinize potentially anti-competitive mergers. The vast majority of deals reviewed by the FTC and the Department of Justice are allowed to proceed after the first preliminary review, according to the FTC’s website.

However, if a second request is issued, companies must provide more information to the FTC. As part of its defense against Broadcom, Qualcomm has argued that any deal faces a long antitrust review.

Broadcom said that it had anticipated the second request as a normal part of the regulatory approval process.

“This signifies that Broadcom is moving into the next stage of the U.S. antitrust review process,” Broadcom said in a statement.

Deals that get a second FTC request for information often do so because of their complexity and size, and a potential acquisition of Qualcomm by Broadcom could still subsequently be approved, according to sources who asked not to be named because the matter is private.

Reuters reported on the second request earlier on Friday. Qualcomm declined to comment, while the FTC did not respond to a request for comment.

Broadcom said this week that a separate FTC review of its client relationships is immaterial to its operations, does not relate to its wireless business and has no impact on its proposal to acquire Qualcomm.

Broadcom has said it is very confident it can complete the Qualcomm deal within 12 months of signing an agreement, while Qualcomm has said that the regulatory review processes required around the world would take much longer.

A deal that Qualcomm has in the works, its proposed $38 billion acquisition of NXP Semiconductors, was approved by EU antitrust regulators this week. Only China has yet to approve this deal, something expected in the next two weeks, according to one of the sources.

The NXP deal still faces an uncertain future because some NXP shareholders have asked for Qualcomm to raise its offer.

Broadcom has offered to pay $60 per share in cash and $10 per share of its own stock for Qualcomm. To put pressure on Qualcomm, Broadcom has put forward 11 board director nominees to replace Qualcomm’s board. Qualcomm shareholders are scheduled to vote on these directors in March.

Reporting by Greg Roumeliotis and Liana B. Baker in New York; Editing by Tom Brown and Cynthia Osterman

ADM pursues big ag merger with grain trader Bunge: WSJ

CHICAGO/CALGARY, Alberta (Reuters) – Top U.S. grains merchant Archer Daniels Midland Co (ADM.N) has proposed a takeover of Bunge Ltd (BG.N), The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday, a move that could set up a battle for Bunge with Swiss-based rival Glencore Plc (GLEN.L).

Large grain traders that make money by buying, selling, storing and shipping crops have struggled in recent years with a global oversupply. Thin margins have squeezed core commodity trading operations, including those of ADM, Bunge, Cargill Inc [CARG.UL] and Louis Dreyfus Co [AKIRAU.UL]. Together the four are known as the “ABCDs” and dominate the global grains trade.

Consolidation is seen as one remedy. Glencore last year sought a tie-up with Bunge in what was viewed as a start of a wave of mergers and acquisitions in the industry.

The Journal quoted unnamed sources as saying that ADM had made the approach and that details were unclear.

White Plains, New York-based Bunge operates in more than 40 countries and is Brazil’s largest exporter of agricultural products, while Chicago-based ADM says it has customers in 160 countries.

Bunge, which has a market capitalization of $9.79 billion, closed up 11.4 percent at $77.56 on Friday. ADM has a market cap of $22.64 billion.

ADM said it does not comment on “rumors or speculation” Bunge did not respond to requests for comment.

STRATEGY SHIFT?

Grain companies in recent years have expanded into higher-margin sectors, such as food ingredients and aquaculture, to offset weak results and wild swings connected to their traditional business of handling crops.

In 2014, ADM bought natural ingredient company Wild Flavors for about $3 billion in its biggest deal ever. The company has also broadened into handling healthy ingredients such as fruits, nuts and “ancient grains.”

“News of the ADM bid is a bit surprising given that ADM had been indicating the company’s strategic direction was more towards value-added rather the traditional commodities,” said Farha Aslam, analyst for Stephens Inc.

ADM is the most U.S.-focused of the major grain companies and a takeover would help it grow in South America, where Bunge is a major agricultural force.

ADM, which dates back to 1902, has tried to expand its international operations in part to take advantage of growing demand from China. In 2013, Australia rejected its attempted $2.55 billion takeover of Australian grain handler GrainCorp Ltd (GNC.AX) on concerns it could reduce competition.

Bunge was founded in Amsterdam 200 years ago. It moved its headquarters to South America as its operations grew in the region and relocated to New York ahead of an initial public offering in 2001.

HURDLES LOOM

Aslam estimated that fair value for Bunge in a takeover would be $90 to $95 per share. Morningstar said Bunge could go for about $90 to more than $100 per share.

Any tie-up would likely face stiff scrutiny from regulators and opposition from farmers who fear handing more market control to ADM could hurt prices paid for wheat, corn and soybeans.

The biggest overlap between ADM and Bunge in the United States is in grain origination and oilseeds processing, Aslam said. The companies would probably need to divest facilities in North America and also possibly in Europe, she said.

Aslam also said it was possible ADM and Glencore could partner in a bid for Bunge to split up its operations.

“ADM would take the more value-added downstream businesses and Glencore would own the more ag commodity businesses,” she said.

Glencore could not immediately be reached for comment.

A grain trading source said there is so much overlap of oilseed crushing assets between the two companies that the reported deal looks defensive – a way to keep Glencore from acquiring Bunge.

Bunge rebuffed Glencore last year, and the two struck an agreement that temporarily prevents Glencore from making a hostile bid, according to news media reports.

FARMERS RAISE WORRIES

An ADM-Bunge merger would also face opposition from farmer groups in key agricultural markets, including the United States, European Union, China, India and Brazil, said Erik Gordon, a professor at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business.

The companies’ relative tardiness in joining the big-agriculture merger game – following on the heels of DowDuPont (DWDP.N), Nutrien Ltd (NTR.TO) and others – would make gaining regulatory approval even tougher, Gordon said.

“When you’re the first one, there’s still more competition. Once they’ve let a few through, they may have second thoughts,” he said.

Grain farmers need five or six active buyers in order to get fair prices for their goods, but there are already only a handful, said Peter Carstensen, who teaches law at the University of Wisconsin at Madison.

“This is the kind of transaction that will screw farmers,” he said.

Illinois farmer Dan Henebry, who delivers corn and soybeans to ADM’s North American headquarters in Decatur, Illinois, said he was worried a takeover of Bunge could lead to grain handlers paying farmers less for their crops.

“We’ve had so many mergers,” Henebry said. “Less competition is not good.”

Reporting by John Benny in Bengaluru, Rod Nickel in Calgary, Alberta, Tom Polansek in Chicago, Chris Prentice in New York and Diane Bartz in Washington; Writing by Peter Henderson and Anna Driver; Editing by Matthew Lewis and Leslie Adler

Possible Buffett heir Abel has small Berkshire stake, likely to grow

(Reuters) – Greg Abel, considered by many investors the top contender to succeed Warren Buffett as Berkshire Hathaway Inc’s (BRKa.N) chief executive officer, on Friday reported owning about $2.1 million of the conglomerate’s stock.

Abel, who along with Ajit Jain was named a Berkshire vice chairman and director last week, disclosed his stake a day after Jain reported a $109 million ownership stake.

The stakes were disclosed in regulatory filings.

Abel, 55, who has run the Berkshire Hathaway Energy unit, was appointed vice chairman to oversee non-insurance operations such as the BNSF railroad, Dairy Queen ice cream, Fruit of the Loom underwear and NetJets planes.

Jain, 66, Berkshire’s top reinsurance executive and the other strong contender to succeed Buffett, was appointed vice chairman to oversee insurance operations such as Geico auto insurance and General Re reinsurance.

Abel reported holding his Berkshire stake indirectly for the benefit of his family. Berkshire Hathaway Energy said about a year ago that Abel owned a stake in that unit that could be converted into Berkshire stock worth more than $400 million at the time.

Omaha, Nebraska-based Berkshire said last week that relevant factors in its succession planning were that both possess “integrity, business savvy, an owner-oriented attitude and a deep genuine interest in Berkshire.”

Buffett, 87, has run Berkshire since 1965 and has not signaled any plans to leave soon. He owns roughly one-sixth of the company, comprising most of what Forbes magazine said on Friday is his $91.6 billion fortune.

Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Cynthia Osterman

Wall Street ends higher despite government shutdown threat

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Wall Street rose on Friday, led by gains in consumer stocks, even as a possible government shutdown loomed.

The SP 500 and the Nasdaq hit record closing highs, while the Dow ended the day higher after trading in a narrow range.

Nike Inc (NKE.N), Philip Morris International Inc (PM.N) and Home Depot Inc (HD.N) rose between 1.5 percent and 4.8 percent on upbeat analyst expectations, helping to boost the SP 500. Conversely, losses in International Business Machines Corp (IBM.N) and American Express (AXP.N) capped gains on the Dow.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI rose 53.91 points, or 0.21 percent, to close at 26,071.72, the SP 500 .SPX gained 12.27 points, or 0.44 percent, to 2,810.3 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC added 40.33 points, or 0.55 percent, to 7,336.38.

For the week, the Dow rose 1.04 percent, the SP 500 added 0.86 percent and the Nasdaq gained 1.04 percent.

Nine of the 11 major SP sectors were higher, led by a 1.1 percent gain in the consumer staples index .SPLRCS and a 0.9 percent rise in consumer discretionary stocks .SPLRCD.

A disappointing full-year profit forecast from IBM pushed its shares down 4.0 percent, the biggest single-day loss since July.

American Express slipped 1.8 percent after posting its first quarterly loss in 26 years and suspending share buybacks for the next six months.

“The market has a few jitters as the result of a potential shutdown,” said Kevin Miller, chief executive of E-Valuator Funds in Bloomington, Minnesota. “From a longer-term perspective, corporate earnings are still strong, and we’re about to engage in the benefits of tax reform.”

The U.S. Senate was racing to avert a shutdown ahead of a midnight deadline on the spending measure amid lingering disagreements between Democrats and Republicans. Negotiations continued on Friday after Senate Democratic leader Chuck Schumer met with President Donald Trump at the White House to address the impasse.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 1.98-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 2.51-to-1 ratio favored advancers.

The SP 500 posted 105 new 52-week highs and nine new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 171 new highs and 30 new lows.

Volume on U.S. exchanges was 6.82 billion shares, compared to the 6.32 billion average over the last 20 trading days.

Additional reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Leslie Adler and James Dalgleish