U.S. markets and stock exchange traded funds climbed Tuesday as more areas begin to ease lockdown restrictions in hopes of kick-starting stagnate economies.
On Tuesday, the Invesco QQQ Trust (NASDAQ: QQQ) was up 1.9%, SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF (NYSEArca: DIA) gained 1.5%, and SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: SPY) rose 1.8%.
A number of countries such as Italy, along with a couple of U.S. states, are tentatively easing stay-at-home orders this week, Reuters reports.
“We are in the hope mode regarding the rebound that will come once the economies reopen,” Jim McDonald, chief investment strategist for Northern Trust, told Reuters.
However, some observers warned that the rebound could face an uphill battle due to risks of another wave of coronavirus infections following a premature rollback in lockdown measures. A new surge in cases would derail confidence and extend the economic recovery process.
“May, June will be the turning point in terms of restarting global economic activity, and that’s really what the market is looking at,” Stefan Hofer, chief investment strategist at LGT Bank Asia, told the Wall Street Journal. “What we’re all focusing on is the pace with which you have successful restarts of these economies and then also very important is that there’s no second wave of Covid-19.”
Additionally, others pointed to the growing evidence of a prolonged economic downturn and weakness in corporate America. For instance, the domestic services sector suffered through its first contraction in nearly 10-1/2-years. The markets will be watching out for the Labor Department’s monthly nonfarm payroll numbers due Friday.
“It’s all about the mood swings and hopes of the economies reopening. But the problem is this could change once we get to see some of the hard numbers, especially the employment report,” Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities, told Reuters.
Meanwhile, with over half of S&P 500 companies reporting quarterly results so far, first-quarter earnings are expected to decline 12.5%, and analysts anticipate an earnings recession in the second quarter, according to Refinitiv data.
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