* Wall Street climbs on defensive share gains
* ADP falls short of expectations
* Dollar edges away from two-year lows (Updates with close of European markets)
NEW YORK, Sept 2 (Reuters) - A gauge of global stocks climbed to an intraday record on Wednesday as investors looked to improving economic data and U.S. congressional negotiations for more stimulus to support the recovery from coronavirus lockdowns.
On Wall Street, each of the three major equity indexes moved higher, but gains were led by defensive sectors such as utilities as the high-flying tech sector paused.
Earlier data from the ADP National Employment Report showed private payrolls rose by 428,000 jobs in August, well short of expectations as the government’s aid to support workers and employers runs out. While July’s data was revised higher, the report indicated a slowing in the labor market recovery.
A separate report showed factory orders rose more than expected in July, pointing to continued improvement in the manufacturing sector.
The mixed data may have fueled expectations Washington may feel pressure to reach a deal on a new stimulus act, although on Tuesday U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi said “serious differences” remain between Democrats and the White House after a phone call with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, adding to the defensive tilt on Wall Street.
“A handful of technology stocks have been a great place to be over the last several months, but at some point you need to kind of be on the lookout for other opportunities outside of those concentrated names,” said Adam Phillips, director of portfolio strategy at EP Wealth Advisors in Torrance, California.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 282.9 points, or 0.99%, to 28,928.56, the S&P 500 gained 37.97 points, or 1.08%, at 3,564.62, and the Nasdaq Composite added 71.50 points, or 0.6%, at 12,011.17.
While tech stocks underperformed the broader U.S. market, they helped European stocks snap a four-day streak of declines. Tech shares jumped 1.98% to close at the highest in more than 19 years.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 1.66% and MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe gained 0.63%. MSCI’s index reached an intraday record for a sixth straight day.
The dollar strengthened against a basket of major currencies for a second straight day from lows of more than two years, while the euro pulled back from the key $1.20 level reached in the prior session.
The dollar index rose 0.598%, with the euro down 0.67% to $1.183.
The Russian rouble dropped against the greenback, with losses accelerating after German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Wednesday that Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, who is in intensive care in a Berlin hospital, was poisoned with a Soviet-style Novichok nerve agent in an attempt to murder him.
The rouble weakened 1.65% versus the greenback at 75.25 per dollar.
Benchmark 10-year notes last rose 7/32 in price to yield 0.6494%, down from 0.671% late on Tuesday.
In commodities, retreated as weekly government data showed U.S. gasoline demand fell in the latest week, an indication that economic recovery from the pandemic may be slower than expected.
U.S. crude recently fell 3.41% to $41.30 per barrel and Brent was at $44.32, down 2.76% on the day.
Additional reporting by eporting by Medha Singh and Devik Jain in Bengaluru; editing by Jonathan Oatis and Richard Chang
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