Trading Nation

Stocks are surging on trade optimism – five experts weigh in

Stocks surge after US and China agree to meet on trade—Five experts break down the move

Stocks rocketed higher Thursday, fueled by renewed optimism over trade talks between the U.S. and China.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped more than 400 points by midday.

In interviews on CNBC, five experts weigh in on what the trade developments mean.

Terri Spath, CIO of Sierra Mutual Funds, says investors have to balance risk-on and risk-off exposure.

"We're in a situation now where the bond market is shouting very loudly that they're expecting something very bad and I think it's a mistake to ignore that. ... You know with that type of environment we don't want to be to risk-on, but at the same time, you know the trends are still positive. There's still a lot of uncertainty, so we're comfortable being invested."

Drew Matus, chief market strategist at MetLife Investment Management, is waiting for more progress.

"Both leaders are coming to a conclusion that it's best to get this behind us. … For there to be progress there has to be give on both sides."

Michael Zezas, head of U.S. public policy strategy at Morgan Stanley, says both sides have a way to go before real progress is made.

"What we've seen since May 5, which is when the deal really broke down along some really meaningful key issues, is that there have been plenty of talks but there's also been plenty of escalation. So it's impossible for us to know exactly what's being talked about. But the pattern of evidence is that both sides are talking but both sides are escalating — which would suggest that the key issues of when the tariffs come off, how to enforce intellectual property protections, how much China's economy should open up and over what time frame — that there hasn't been meaningful progress there."

Robert Sinche, global strategist at Global Macro and Markets, also needs to see more meaningful progress before he sees a trade deal in the making.

You know, it's great to say they're going to have talks, but there are some real substantive issues and it's not clear that China's really … ready to give in on those substantive issues, it's not clear the U.S. is willing to give in. And I don't think either side is ready to blink yet."

Kristina Hooper, chief global market strategist at Invesco, sees some choppiness in markets without much more upside.

"Stocks are certainly at a fairly appropriate level give where we've been, given that we've seen decent earnings. The concern, though, is that earnings deteriorate from here. And of course, as we look at U.S. stocks relative to stocks outside the U.S., valuations seem stretched. So one could see a scenario where stocks remain at current levels with some volatility but they really don't go that much higher. Supporting them will likely be a more accommodative Fed."