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US stocks inch higher on China tariff exemptions

Wall Street stocks inched higher early Wednesday after China said it would pull some US products from its tariff list, an apparent olive branch ahead of trade talks set for next month.

Investors also have taken heart from a shift in the bond market led to higher returns after slumping Treasury yields in August raised recession worries.

Early trading continued the market's meandering trend this week, which has been relatively light on economic data and corporate news.

Around 15 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.2 percent at 26,964.16.

The broad-based S&P 500 edged up 0.1 percent at 2,983.22, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index gained 0.2 percent to 8,103.03.

China's Customs Tariff Commission of the State Council released two lists of exempted US goods, saving some seafood and anti-cancer drugs from the tariff hit.

However, Beijing did not spare high-profile US products like soybeans and pork.

Trade negotiators have said they will meet in Washington in early October, raising hopes for an easing of tensions between the world's two biggest economies.

Both sides imposed fresh tit-for-tat tariffs on September 1 in the latest round of levies, which now cover goods worth hundreds of billions of dollars.

Key economic reports in the coming days include data on consumer prices and retail sales, as well as a policy decision by the European Central Bank, which is expected to undertake more stimulus.