London — World stocks hit a four-month high on Wednesday on hopes of progress in trade talks between the US and China, with a dovish backdrop at major central banks also helping push markets back into the black. US President Donald Trump said negotiations with China are going well and suggested he is open to extending the deadline to complete them beyond March 1. Up to now, it was assumed US tariffs on $200bn worth of Chinese imports will rise to 25% from 10% if no trade deal is reached by then. Asian shares soared on Trump’s comment, and European stock indices also strengthened, with a pan-European index gaining 0.3%, pushing the MSCI world equity index, which tracks shares in 47 countries, to a four-month high. US stock futures suggested that Wall Street would hold on to Tuesday’s strong gains, and open about flat. “I’d say the market is very much pricing in a deal at this stage, and there’s some merit to this as I don’t think you engage in such a solid period of talks over a numb...

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