Economists polled by Reuters had expected China's exports to fall by 3% year-on-year and imports to decline by 5.2% in September.
Stocks rallied after Donald Trump said China and the U.S. reached the first phase of a trade deal that delays tariff hikes.
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U.S. based companies announced 1,160 CEO exits through September, according to Challenger, Gray & Christmas.
"The relative P/E today suggests that small caps should lead large caps over the next decade," says one strategist.
U.S. producer prices unexpectedly fell in September, weighed down by decreases in the costs of goods and services.
Sharp drops in unemployment in the past often have brought commensurate earnings, but not this time around.
The so-called hard data, which refers to concrete numbers about the economy such as unemployment, continues to reflect economic strength.
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The latest omen for the sector came in the government's jobs report, which showed that manufacturing posted net job losses.
The jobless rate for Hispanics hit a record low of 3.9% in September, while African Americans maintained its lowest rate ever, the Labor Department reported.
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CNBC studied the net change in employment by industry for September based on data from the Labor Department.
The U.S. trade deficit widened more than expected thanks in part to a record level of imports of consumer goods. More tariffs loom.
The jobless rate dropped 0.2 percentage points to 3.5%, matching a level it last saw in December 1969.
The report comes amid worries that the U.S. economy faces a recession as global growth slows and tariffs put a dent in business plans to expand.
Credit Suisse said a contraction in industrial production accompanied by healthy economic data elsewhere lands the economy in a middle ground or a "semi recession."