U.S. stock indexes closed moderately lower, but up from earlier lows, as traders evaluated a barrage of mixed economic data and conflicting developments with China.

While China’s top trade negotiator has called for a new round of trade talks the U.S. Congress passed a bill that supports Hong Kong protesters, earning rebukes from Beijing officials.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 54.8 points to 27,766.29 while the S&P 500 lost 4.92 points to 3,103.54 and the Nasdaq Composite Index dropped 20.52 points to 8,506.21.

Volume on the New York Stock Exchange totaled 3 billion shares with 1,154 issues advancing, 48 setting new highs, and 1,800 declining, with 67 setting new lows.

Active movers were led by Stage Stores Inc. (SSI), SiTime Corp. (SITM), Hepion Pharmaceuticals Inc. (HEPA), NF Energy Saving Corp. (BIMI) and  Molecular Templates Inc. (MTEM).

The Wall Street Journal reported Chinese Vice Premier Liu He invited U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to hold a meeting in Beijing for new trade talks. Bloomberg reported Liu was “cautiously optimistic” about reaching a phase one trade deal.

However, China was irate over the U.S. Congress passage of legislation late Wednesday that endorses the pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong and requires the U.S. to scrutinize Hong Kong’s special trade status regularly. The U.S. Senate had earlier passed the same bill. The bill now heads for President Trump's desk.

The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development warned in a report that lack of climate change policy will hinder business investment and forecasts global GDP growth of 2.9% this year, the lowest in a decade.

Initial U.S. jobless claims were unchanged at 227,000 for the week ended Nov. 16, but exceeded economists’ forecasts of 218,000 after seasonal adjustments. Last week’s claims were revised upward by 2,000.

The Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index rose to a seasonally adjusted reading of 10.4 in November, up from 5.6 in October. Economists had expected a reading of 7 for November.

The National Association of Realtors said on Thursday existing home sales rose 1.9% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.46 million units in October, up from 5.36 million units in September. Economists had forecast existing home sales rising to 5.47 million units.

The Conference Board Leading Economic Index slipped 0.1% to 111.7 in October. Economists expected the index to climb by 0.2%. "The major difference this month is the softening in the labor market, whereas conditions in manufacturing remain weak and show no signs of improvement yet," said Ataman Ozyildirim, senior director of economic research at the board.

Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari said Thursday he is not expecting the economy to slide into recession. “Right now, overall, my base case scenario is continued economic growth,” he said at the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce. “But there are risks on the horizon, the biggest risks being around tariffs and trade and the uncertainty that creates.”

TD Ameritrade (AMTD) surged almost 17% on a report it may be acquired by Charles Schwab (SCHW).

Global markets were all in negative territory.

Overnight, Asian markets finished broadly lower with the Hang Seng plunging 1.57% while Japan's Nikkei 225 fell 0.48% and China's Shanghai Composite was down by 0.25%.

European markets finished lower as the FTSE 100 fell 0.33% while Germany's DAX slipped 0.16% and France's CAC 40 fell 0.22%.

Crude oil futures rose 2.47% to $58.42 per barrel and Brent crude slipped 0.3% at $63.78. Gold futures were down 0.63%.

The euro was down 0.13% to $1.106 while the pound sterling slipped 0.14% to $1.2906.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose 1.96% to 1.772% while yield on the 30-year note gained 1.27% to 2.231%.