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Oct 29, 2020

S&P 500 rebounds to post biggest gain in two weeks

BNN Bloomberg's closing bell update: October 29, 2020

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U.S. stocks bounced back a day after their biggest rout in four months, with investors encouraged by better-than-forecast economic data even as they kept a wary eye on growing coronavirus infections.

The S&P 500 Index 1.2 per cent, the most since Oct. 12, after President Donald Trump said he plans “a very big package” of stimulus following the election. Investors also looked toward earnings reports from Apple Inc., Amazon.com Inc., Alphabet Inc. and Facebook Inc. due after the close. The dollar and Treasury yields rose after reports showed a decline in weekly jobless claims and a surge in third-quarter economic growth that reversed much of the pandemic collapse.

Even with Thursday’s gains, global equities are headed for the worst weekly decline since March amid new lockdown measures and U.S. politicians’ failure to agree to a stimulus plan before the Nov. 3 election. The COVID-19 surge in the Midwest rose to a record, led by single-day highs in Kansas, Iowa and South Dakota as the region’s outbreak spread toward both coasts. Anthony Fauci, the government’s top infectious disease doctor, said the earliest a vaccine might be available is late December or early January.

“The market clearly has concerns about COVID and shutdowns but it would not surprise me at all if in a week or two there’s a completely different narrative,” said Evan Brown, head of multi-asset strategy at UBS Asset Management. “Ultimately we’re going to get a safe and effective vaccine.”

Facebook and Alphabet are expected to report revenue growth aided by a rebound in the market for digital-advertising when they release third-quarter earnings later Thursday. Performance by peers Snap Inc. and Pinterest Inc. suggest that user growth generated by pandemic lockdowns is starting to boost spending as brands shift ad budgets to online platforms.

In Europe, stocks edged lower. The euro extended its decline after the European Central Bank paved the way for a package of fresh easing in December to deal with a worsening economic outlook.

Stocks slumped in Asia, with losses for the main indexes in Japan, Australia and Hong Kong.

Here are the main market moves:

Stocks

  • The S&P 500 Index rose 1.2 per cent as of 4 p.m. New York time.
  • The Nasdaq 100 Index increased 1.9 per cent.
  • The Stoxx Europe 600 Index fell 0.1 per cent.
  • The MSCI Asia Pacific Index decreased 0.2 per cent.

Currencies

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

Bonds

  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries rose six basis points to 0.83 per cent.
  • Germany’s 10-year yield declined one basis point to -0.64 per cent.
  • Britain’s 10-year yield rose one basis point to 0.22 per cent.

Commodities

  • WTI crude declined 2.7 per cent to US$36.38 a barrel.
  • Gold weakened 0.4 per cent to US$1,870.01 an ounce.

--With assistance from Adam Haigh, Todd White, Yakob Peterseil and Nancy Moran.

 

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