Stock exchange traded funds were in a big global rally Wednesday after central banks made coordinated moves to provide liquidity to financial markets.
The Federal Reserve said it was working with other central banks to announce “coordinated actions to enhance their capacity to provide liquidity support to the global financial system,” according to a press release that crossed before the opening bell.
“The purpose of these actions is to ease strains in financial markets and thereby mitigate the effects of such strains on the supply of credit to households and businesses and so help foster economic activity. These central banks have agreed to lower the pricing on the existing temporary U.S. dollar liquidity swap arrangements by 50 basis points,” the Fed said.
It is coordinating with the Bank of Canada, the Bank of England, the Bank of Japan, the European Central Bank, the Federal Reserve and the Swiss National Bank. Boosting dollar liquidity swap lines is a move designed to ease funding pressure on foreign banks as the Eurozone debt crisis rages.
SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: SPY) rose 3% in preopen trading Wednesday. Sentiment was lifted further after the ADP employment report showed private-sector jobs rose by 206,000 in November. Markets will get the nonfarm payrolls report on Friday. [Jobs Report on Tap]
Stocks also got a boost after China lowered the reserve requirement ratio for lenders by 0.5%, triggering speculation China’s move could signal the start of more easing from central banks.
The iShares FTSE China 25 (NYSEArca: FXI) was poised for a higher open Wednesday.
Cutting the reserve ratio “showed China’s monetary policy has swung into easing mode as economic growth slows while inflation eases,” Reuters reported.
The China ETF is down 19% year to date on signs the economy and real estate market are losing steam.
Goldman Sachs this week reversed its recommendation on Chinese equities, which are underperforming, the Financial Times reported.
SPDR S&P 500
Full disclosure: Tom Lydon’s clients own SPY.