World stocks have reached a record high on Friday as well as oil rose after strong U.S. and Chinese economic data were released. These have boosted expectations for a solid global recovery from the economic effects of the pandemic.
In recent days, government stimulus, along with a string of strong corporate earnings releases has helped push stock markets to new heights. Additionally, signs of economic recovery in other countries.
As the economic re-opening speeds up in the coming months, they believe the bull market remains on a solid footing. This was according to Mark Haefele, chief investment officer, UBS Global Wealth Management.
As the global recovery becomes more entrenched, fuelled by continued fiscal stimulus and ultra-loose monetary policy, they think this should translate into continued positive UK equity market performance. This was a statement from Nick Peters, multi asset portfolio manager, Fidelity International.
Stocks on the Move
In early European trade, MSCI’s broadest gauge of world stocks edged higher, up 0.2% to a record high. Moreover, Europe’s top indexes all opened higher. Britain’s FTSE 100 was leading up 0.5%, also passing 7,000 points for the first time since February 2020.
The S&P 500 added 0.1% while Nasdaq futures lost 0.1%. That said, the U.S. stock futures signalled a mixed open on Wall Street.
Overnight in Asia, markets headed towards a path similar to Europe’s. The MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan climbed 0.5%. Also, Shanghai shares and Japan’s Nikkei added 0.8% and 0.1%, respectively.
During Q1, Chinese data showed a record 18.3% growth, though the reading slightly fell short of expectations. Last month, retail sales bounced strongly.
The strong Chinese data came after the United States data showed upbeat numbers overnight. In March, retail sales rebounded 9.8%, pushing the level of sales 17.1%. That’s more than its pre-pandemic level to a record high.
Other data highlighted the brightening economic prospects, including first-time claims for unemployment benefits. These have tumbled last week to the lowest level since March 2020.
All these have initially helped oil prices, reaching one-month highs due to economic data. Moreover, higher demand forecasts from the International Energy Agency (IEA) and OPEC, before pulling back.
Brent futures were last steady at $66.94 per barrel, while the U.S. crude was 0.1% lower at $63.4 per barrel. Both were on track for their first substantial weekly gains in six.
U.S. bond yields dropped despite the strong data. This was partly driven by buying from Japan, which began a new financial year this month. Notably, the 10-year U.S. Treasuries yield was last at 1.573%.