I've come across this sentence while reading an economic report:

"Stocks climbed on optimism Mexican tariffs will be avoided."

And got confused about the structure of this sentence. I'm not really sure which are the subject and verb. If 'climbed' is the verb then do we need a preposition between optimism and Mexican?

  • The subordinator "that" is optional (though preferred). "Stocks" is subject, "climbed" is the verb and "on optimism (that) Mexican tariffs will be avoided" is a PP as complement of "climbed". The content clause "(that) Mexican tariffs will be avoided" is complement of "optimism".
    – BillJ
    Jun 10 '19 at 8:38
  • Thank you, BillJ. I thought the same thing but still don't know why they omitted 'that'.
    – 99 fact
    Jun 18 '19 at 1:09

Main sentence:

Stocks ... will be avoided.

Which stocks will be avoided? The stocks which...

... climbed on optimism Mexican tariffs

However, I think that there is at least one mistake in the original sentence. It would make more sense as:

"Stocks climbed on optimistic Mexican tariffs will be avoided."

with the same structure as explained previously.

  • No. (1) The stocks climbed because (2) there was optimism that Mexican tariffs will be avoided. Had the stocks been avoided, nobody would have traded in them and they would have gone down, not up. Also, your revised sentence is ungrammatical. Jun 10 '19 at 17:06
  • I can agree that the revised sentence is ungrammatical - for me, even the original is a mess. The interpretation you provide works fine, but I am not sure that it is the only meaning. Again, I get no meaning from the original.
    – virolino
    Jun 11 '19 at 6:12
  • Thank you everyone for your comments!
    – 99 fact
    Jun 18 '19 at 1:09

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