Global equity benchmarks moved higher on Thursday following signs of some success by governments and central banks which have taken additional steps to bolster their economies during the COVID-19 pandemic, while oil prices pulled back from an earlier surge.
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MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe gained 1.58%.
Gains in the United States were bolstered after the Federal Reserve announced a $2.3 trillion effort to support local governments and small to medium-sized businesses.
The U.S. central bank said it would begin buying municipal bonds issued by state and local governments in order to help them respond to the health crisis.
The S&P 500 gained more than 10% since the start of the holiday-shortened week.
“Sentiment remains volatile, but investors appear to be looking through the growing headline numbers of COVID-19 cases and focusing on signs that the spread of the pandemic is being brought under control, which in turn is underpinning hopes for a relatively swift relaxation of containment measures,” said Mark Haefele, chief investment officer at UBS Global Wealth Management.
On Thursday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said the state’s efforts at social distancing were working in getting the virus under control in the epicenter of the U.S. outbreak.
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