Global stocks jump to three-month high

Global shares vaulted to a near three-month high on Wednesday as hopes of more stimulus and further easing in social restrictions around the world outweighed caution over a host of worries from the coronavirus to growing US civil unrest.

Pan-European Euro Stoxx 50 futures were up 1.27 per cent while MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan gained 1.8 per cent, extending its rally into a fifth straight day to reach a level last seen on March 9.

According to Reuters, Japan’s Nikkei rose 1.1 per cent to its highest level since late February, while mainland China’s CSI300 rose 0.6 per cent to break above its May peak to a 12-week high. South Korea’s Kospi gained more than three per cent

In those three East Asian countries, where the COVID-19 is relatively contained, the indexes have recovered substantially to be only about 5-6 per cent below this year’s peaks.

E-mini futures for the US S&P 500 were up 0.2 per cent in early Wednesday trade, extending the gains so far this week to 1.4 per cent. The tech-heavy Nasdaq index has risen to be just over two per cent below February’s record peak.

“The good times continue to roll in risk markets,” Mazen Issa, senior FX strategist at TD Securities, said in a report. “As intense as the rally has been, this is likely set to continue as the breadth of the equity rally has now spread outside the U.S.”

MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe rose 0.3 per cent, hitting a three-month high and extending the gain from its March 23 low to almost 36 per cent. Despite pandemic lockdowns that have pushed many economies into contraction, the global index is down year-to-date less than 8 per cent.

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