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Local markets recorded gains for the second day in a row, marking Wednesday its best day in a week, as investors grew optimistic that the coronavirus will soon peak. The Top 40 rose 1.56% for the day.
The S&P 500 and Dow Jones indices reached all-time highs just after opening on Wednesday morning on the back of optimism that the Chinese virus is slowing. At 21h00, the Dow Jones grew 0.79% stronger.
European indices reached new heights on Wednesday thanks to a rally in luxury shares and positivity about the slowing virus outbreak in China. The pan-European index closed up 0.63%.
The Hang Seng extended gains on Wednesday as the slowing pace of the coronavirus eased concerns around the epidemic’s effect on the global economy. At the close of trade, the Hang Seng Index was up 0.87%.
Heavyweight SoftBank Group Corp boosted the Japanese benchmark index on Wednesday “after a US federal judge approved a merger between its US wireless unit Sprint Corp and T-Mobile US Inc”. The Nikkei closed up 0.74%.
The local currency took a knock on Wednesday, after the release of poor SA economic data weighed it down. At 21h00, the rand traded R14.86 to the dollar.
Bullion prices flattened on Wednesday as “a drop in the number of new coronavirus cases comforted markets that the epidemic’s effects could be contained”. Spot gold traded at $1 567.14/oz by 21h00.
Investor optimism that the oil demand in the world’s second-largest economy will start to recover boosted the oil price by about 3% on Wednesday. Brent crude traded at $56.36 a barrel at 21h00.
Source: Reuters, Business Day, Trading Economics
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