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:
- 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%.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.