GLOBAL MARKETS-World stocks scale fresh peaks on strong China, U.S. data

Government stimulus, strong corporate earnings from U.S. banks and in Europe, along with signs of economic recovery in countries leading the COVID-19 vaccination race have all helped push stock market indexes to new heights this week. MSCI's broadest gauge of world stocks rose 0.42% to an all-time peak, lifted by surging European shares and lesser gains on Wall Street where both the Dow Industrial and benchmark S&P 500 posted their fourth week of successive gains.

Reuters | Updated: 17-04-2021 11:06 IST | Created: 17-04-2021 00:59 IST
GLOBAL MARKETS-World stocks scale fresh peaks on strong China, U.S. data
Representative Image Image Credit: Pixabay

Gold prices hit a seven-week high and global stocks scaled new records on Friday after strong U.S. and Chinese economic data bolstered expectations of a solid global recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. Government stimulus, strong corporate earnings from U.S. banks and in Europe, along with signs of economic recovery in countries leading the COVID-19 vaccination race have all helped push stock market indexes to new heights this week.

MSCI's broadest gauge of world stocks rose 0.42% to an all-time peak, lifted by surging European shares and lesser gains on Wall Street where both the Dow Industrial and benchmark S&P 500 posted their fourth week of successive gains. As long as the strong economic rebound, tremendous fiscal and monetary support and progress on vaccine distribution remain in place, markets can continue to grind higher, said Michael Arone, chief investment strategist at State Street Global Advisors in Boston.

"Investors and market participants continue to underestimate both the economic and earnings recovery," he said. "The earnings numbers have continued to exceed expectations by a very wide margin." U.S. homebuilding surged to nearly a 15-year high in March, the Commerce Department said on Friday, adding to robust retail sales data the prior day, suggesting the economy was roaring.

In Europe, the pan-regional STOXX 600 index closed up 0.90% at a new peak, while Germany's DAX gained 1.3% to hit an all-time high and the UK's FTSE 100 rose 0.5% to close at more than one-year highs. On Wall Street, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.5% and the S&P 500 gained 0.38%, both setting new highs. The Nasdaq Composite added 0.1% as declines in Apple Inc, Facebook Inc Google parent Alphabet Inc weighed on the tech-heavy index.

German car and truck maker Daimler rose 2.7% as higher vehicle prices and strong demand in China helped it post a better-than-expected surge in quarterly operating profit. "As the economic re-opening accelerates in the coming months, we believe the bull market remains on a solid footing," said Mark Haefele, chief investment officer, UBS Global Wealth Management.

Chinese data showing record 18.3% growth in the first quarter drove Asian shares higher, though the reading slightly undershot expectations. Retail sales bounced strongly last month. Asian markets rallied overnight on the news. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan rose 0.4% and Shanghai shares added 0.8%. Japan's Nikkei edged up 0.1%.

"As the U.S. economy and then European economies open up, it should further help Asian exports. This should support emerging market and APAC equities as well as China equities and fixed income," said Sebastien Galy, senior macro strategist at Nordea Asset Management. Gold prices posted their biggest weekly percentage gain, about 4.5%, since early November as the slide this week in Treasury yields and a weaker dollar brightened the metal's appeal.

U.S. gold futures settled 0.8% higher at $1,780.20 an ounce. The dollar slid to a 4-week low against a basket of currencies after the sharp drop in Treasury yields on Thursday, as investors increasingly accepted the Federal Reserve's vow to keep an accommodative policy stance for longer than expected.

The dollar index fell 0.112%, with the euro up 0.11% to $1.1978. The Japanese yen weakened 0.02% versus the greenback at 108.77 per dollar. The yield on U.S. 10-year Treasuries rose 4.6 basis points to 1.5763%, rebounding a bit from multi-week lows hit the prior session.

Oil fell slightly after a week of gains built on strong U.S. and Chinese economic data that offset concerns about rising COVID-19 infections in other major economies. Brent crude futures settled down 17 cents at $66.77 a barrel and U.S. crude futures fell 33 cents to settle at $63.13 a barrel.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Blockchain in Healthcare: Opportunities and challenges

The use of blockchain in healthcare is a relatively new innovation with many of its uses still being explored and related technologies being developed, improved, and scaled. ...

Debate surrounding vaccine passports and development misses bigger picture

... ...

Blockchain vs IOTA: Looking for a better alternative

... ...

For stability, Iraq needs to crack down on corruption

... ...

Videos

Latest News

J-K: Terrorists hurl grenade at security forces in Nawa Bazaar area of old Srinagar

Terrorists on Friday hurled a grenade at security forces in the Nawa Bazaar area in Jammu and Kashmirs Old Srinagar city, the police informed. More details are awaited.The grenade attack comes a day after three Al-Badr terrorists were kille...

Maha: Man duped of Rs 20,000 with promise of hospital bed

A senior citizen, seeking a bed for his coronavirus-infected wife, was allegedly cheated of Rs 20,000 by a fraudster in Maharashtras Nagpur district, police said on Friday.According to the police, the victim Amrendra Narayansinghs 60 wife w...

Five held in connection with 'Hospital bed scam'

Five people have been arrested so far for allegedly blocking beds in private hospitals in the city for COVID patients, police said on Friday.Other than four-five people, we have not arrested anyone else though our investigations are on, a p...

Cal HC asks Bengal govt to file affidavit on law and order situation

A five-judge bench of the Calcutta High Court, taking cognizance of a PIL that claimed life and liberty of people in Bengal are in danger owing to post-poll violence, asked the state government on Friday to file an affidavit in three days, ...

Give Feedback