U.S. markets and stock exchange traded funds pulled back Tuesday as an uncertain economic outlook with rising coronavirus cases weighs on sentiment.
On Tuesday, the Invesco QQQ Trust (NASDAQ: QQQ) was up 0.3%, SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF (NYSEArca: DIA) fell 0.7%, and SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: SPY) dropped 0.2%.
“We’re in this wait-and-see mode,” Oanda analyst Craig Erlam told the Wall Street Journal, adding that while encouraging economic data in the U.S. and elsewhere helped lift markets, many continue to worry about the pandemic. “Every day, it seems always to be explained by optimism or anxiety.”
Investors were also looking ahead toward the upcoming earnings season, which is expected to be weak as the economy continues to recover from the widespread shutdown measures. However, many will be looking forward to the outlooks for the rest of the year and the next. Meanwhile, expectations are already low, which leaves room for a surprise on the upside.
“As long as the bar is low enough, investors always find a reason to be optimistic,” Erlam added.
The optimism, though, was offset by new Covid-19 cases. New York expanded travel quarantine for visitors from three more states, while Florida’s greater Miami area rolled back reopening, Reuters reports.
“There are some signs of improvement in economic activity and there are concerns about rising cases in particular states. And all of that had the market kind of churning but not really find true direction,” Brian Levitt, global market strategist, Invesco, told Reuters.
Many are beginning to take a second look at the astounding rebound in global equities against the uncertain outlook for an economy that remains in a deep recession.
“We are in a situation where the latest news from the U.S., Germany, parts of the U.K. and the Melbourne lockdown in Australia, it just acts as a reminder to investors that not everything is going to proceed on a smooth trajectory,” Peter Dixon, an economist at Commerzbank, told the WSJ.
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