The Latest: Official: Beijing open to trade talks with US





NEW YORK (AP) - The Latest on trade tensions between the United States and China (all times local):

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11:00 a.m.

Stocks are sinking sharply in morning trading on Wall Street as investors' worries about the U.S.-China trade dispute deepen.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell as many as 406 points shortly after trading began, before paring its drop to about 334 points, or 1.3%. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq composite indexes were down by similar degrees.

Energy stocks led the way lower after the price of benchmark U.S. oil sank more than 5% to drop below $59 per barrel. Technology and industrial stocks were also hit hard, as investors see their profits in particular getting hit in the crossfire of the global trade war. These companies often have many suppliers and customers abroad.

Investors fled to the safety of bonds. The yield on the 10 year Treasury slipped to 2.32%, the lowest level in more than a year and down from 2.39% late Wednesday.

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6:10 a.m.

China's foreign ministry says the country is open to resuming trade talks with the U.S., but sincerity and mutual respect are needed. Spokesman Lu Kang said Thursday that China hopes for a restart to talks that broke down earlier this month after the U.S. hiked tariffs on $250 billion in Chinese imports.

Lu said, "China is open to the door of dialogue, but sincerity is indispensable to make a consultation meaningful. A mutually beneficial agreement must be based on mutual respect, equality and mutual benefit."

He reiterated China's criticism of U.S. efforts to restrict commercial cooperation with equipment maker Huawei and other Chinese high-tech firms. He said Washington has "seriously affected the development and cooperation of global science and technology, and has also harmed the vital interests of relevant enterprises and countries."

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4:15 a.m.

China is seeking to support from some of its Asian neighbors and Russia in its escalating tariff fight with the U.S.

Speaking Wednesday at a meeting of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization in Kyrgyzstan, Foreign Minister Wang Yi said representatives of the eight-nation grouping had expressed "broad support" for China's position.

Wang reiterated China's stance that it would never accept unequal trading arrangements. He said Beijing will match "extreme pressure" from the U.S. with its own measures.

Beijing has already responded to Trump's tariff hikes on $250 billion of Chinese imports by slapping penalties on $110 billion of American goods. Based on last year's trade, that leaves about $45 billion in imports from the U.S.

That includes semiconductors and other critical inputs needed by fledgling Chinese tech industries.

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