USA stocks end mixed amid solid earnings, lackluster CPI data

US stocks gain ahead of trade deal signing

Wall Street boosted by trade optimism

Stocks are opening slightly higher on Wall Street, led by gains in health care and technology companies. JPM shares rose 1.12%.

Apple Inc, Facebook Inc, Netflix Inc and Microsoft Corp were the top boosts to the S&P 500 and Nasdaq.

Earnings season gets underway today, with JP Morgan, Citigroup and Wells Fargo all reporting.

The S&P index recorded 46 new 52-week highs and one new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 109 new highs and 20 new lows. The Nasdaq Composite Index decreased 22.60 points, or 0.24 percent, to 9,251.33.

The yield on 10-year Treasuries rose one basis point to 1.85%.Australian 10-year yields rose about four basis points to 1.25%. AP's earlier story follows below.

Gold prices fell nearly 1% ahead of the signing at the White House on Wednesday of the Phase 1 trade deal and as a de-escalation in U.S. -Iran tensions in the Middle East reduced bullion's safe-haven appeal. The Labor Department said its consumer price index rose by 0.2 % in December after climbing by 0.3 % in November.

The world's largest economies are expected to sign a so-called "Phase 1" trade agreement on Wednesday.

Concerns about whether the deal will continue to overshadow that optimism after US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said the deal will not lower punitive tariffs on imports from China until the two sides reach a further agreement.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the Trump administration is preparing to further tighten controls on technology exports to Huawei Technologies.

It is unclear if the deal to be signed on Wednesday takes such issues into account.

The Japanese Nikkei 225 index lost 0.5% to 23,916.58, while the Hang Seng in Hong Kong fell 0.4% to 28,773.59. The S&P 500 Index increased 0.7% Monday. South Korea's Kospi gained 0.4% to 2,237.65.

Other European automobile stocks also fell after China's top auto body reiterated predictions that sales were likely to shrink for the third consecutive year in 2020.

In Europe markets were mixed, as Britain's FTSE-100 gained 0.11%, France's CAC-40 slipped 0.07% and Germany's DAX fell 0.03%.

President Donald Trump and China's chief negotiator, Liu He, are scheduled to sign the "Phase 1" deal that will ease some sanctions on China. The United States dropped its designation of China as a currency manipulator in advance of the signing.

Oanda's Craig Erlam said: "Details of the trade deal are starting to emerge but there's still a lot we don't know". Beijing, meanwhile, will step up its purchases of U.S. farm products and other goods.

Many investors, however, are already looking ahead to a potentially rosier earnings outlook once Washington and China resolve their trade dispute.

Wall Street expects corporate profits for S&P 500 companies to fall by 2% in the last three months of 2019.

Reference crude lost 11 cents to $ 58.12 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Gold fell 0.5% to $1539.64.West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.1% to $58.10 a barrel. It earned 29 cents on Tuesday to $ 64.49 per barrel.

USA gold futures settled down 0.6% at $1,550.60 an ounce.

Human transmission not ruled out in Wuhan virus
Trump impeachment: House lawmakers appointed to prosecute case