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Asian Markets Rise as Trump Considers Interim Trade Agreement with China - Asian markets rose in morning trade on Friday after U.S. President Donald Trump said he is considering an interim trade deal with China.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index gained 0.3% by 10:30 PM ET (02:30 GMT).

Citing five unnamed person familiar with the matter, Bloomberg reported that the Trump administration officials are considering to offer a limited trade agreement to China that would delay and even roll back some U.S. tariffs.

The discussions are preliminary and Trump has yet to sign off on it, Bloomberg noted.

“A lot of people are talking about, and I see a lot of analysts are saying: an interim deal, meaning we’ll do pieces of it, the easy ones first,” Trump told reporters late Thursday. “But there’s no easy or hard. There’s a deal or there’s not a deal. But it’s something we would consider.”

The president added that he would preferred to “get the whole deal done,” but did not rule the possibility of an interim pact.

In-person negotiations between the two sides are set to take place in October in Washington.

Elsewhere, the European Central Bank (ECB) announced overnight a quantitative easing program that entails 20 billion euros per month. The central bank also cut its main deposit rate by 10 basis points to -0.5%, in line with market expectations.

The ECB will likely keep rates at present or lower levels until the inflation outlook “robustly converge to a level sufficiently close to but below 2% within its projection horizon, and such convergence has been persistent.”

“In view of the weakening economic outlook and the continued prominence of downside risk, governments with fiscal space should act in an effective and timely manner,” ECB President Mario Draghi said.

“In countries where public debt is high, governments need to pursue prudent policies that will create the conditions for automatic stabilizers to operate freely. All countries should reinforce their efforts to achieve a more growth-friendly composition of public finances,” he added.

Japan’s Nikkei 225 traded 0.9% higher.

Down under, Australia’s ASX 200 inched up 0.1%.

Markets in China and South Korea are closed for holidays.

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