S&P 500 bounces back to post biggest gain in two weeks

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U.S. stocks rebounded a day after their biggest rout in four months, with investors encouraged by better-than-expected economic data even as they kept a cautious eye on the growth in coronavirus infections.The S&P 500 Index 1.2 percent, the highest since Oct. 12, after President Donald Trump said he was planning “a really big package” of stimulus after the election. Investors also looked at earnings reports from Apple Inc., Amazon.com Inc., Alphabet Inc. and Facebook Inc. due after the close. Dollar and Treasury yields rose after reports showed a drop in weekly jobless claims and a surge in economic growth in the third quarter that reversed much of the pandemic collapse.

Even with Thursday’s gains, global stocks are heading for the worst weekly decline since March amid new lockdowns and the failure of U.S. politicians to agree on a stimulus package ahead of the November 3 election. The COVID-19 outbreak in the Midwest reached an all-time high, led by single-day highs in Kansas, Iowa and South Dakota as the region’s outbreak spread to both coasts. Anthony Fauci, the government’s leading infectious disease physician, said the earliest a vaccine could be available is in late December or early January.

“The market is clearly concerned about COVID and closures, but it wouldn’t surprise me at all if in a week or two there was a completely different narrative,” said Evan Brown, head of multi-asset strategy at UBS Asset Management. “At the end of the day, we’re going to get a safe and effective vaccine.”

Facebook and Alphabet are expected to record revenue growth aided by a rebound in the digital advertising market when they release their third quarter results later Thursday. The performance of their peers Snap Inc. and Pinterest Inc. suggests that user growth generated by pandemic lockdowns is starting to increase spend as brands shift ad budgets to online platforms.

In Europe, stocks fell slightly. The euro continued its decline after the European Central Bank paved the way for further easing in December to deal with a deteriorating economic outlook.

Stocks fell in Asia, with losses for the major indices in Japan, Australia and Hong Kong.

Here are the main market movements:

Stocks

  • The S&P 500 Index rose 1.2 percent at 4 p.m. New York time.
  • The Nasdaq 100 index rose 1.9%.
  • The Stoxx Europe 600 index fell 0.1 percent.
  • The MSCI Asia Pacific index fell by 0.2%.

Devises

  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index rose 0.3 percent.
  • The British pound fell 0.4 percent to US $ 1.2936.
  • The euro weakened 0.6 percent to US $ 1.1678.
  • The Japanese yen fell 0.3 percent to 104.64 per dollar.

Obligations

  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries rose six basis points to 0.83%.
  • Germany’s 10-year yield fell one basis point to -0.64 percent.
  • Britain’s 10-year yield rose one basis point to 0.22 percent.

Basic products

  • WTI crude fell 2.7 percent to US $ 36.38 a barrel.
  • Gold weakened 0.4 percent to US $ 1,870.01 an ounce.

– With the help of Adam Haigh, Todd White, Yakob Peterseil and Nancy Moran.



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