Wall Street stocks push higher, shrugging off recent volatility

·3-min read
Wall Street's tranquil and positive session Monday revived talk that bullishness has returned after a period of volatility

Wall Street stocks were back in rally mode Monday, shrugging off recent bouts of volatility and embracing hopes for brighter days as the pandemic ebbs.

High inflation readings, chaos in the cryptocurrency markets and supply chain challenges as major economies reopen have stymied equities in recent weeks, but concerns about their effects on business took a back seat as this week's trading got underway.

All three major indices were in positive territory the entire session -- a striking departure from the choppy performance in recent weeks.

London and Paris also advanced, while Frankfurt was one of a number of exchanges shut owing to a public holiday. Asian bourses were mixed.

"It's a bull market," said Maris Ogg of Tower Bridge Advisors, crediting continued monetary stimulus from central banks as well as the return of normal life to the rise in indices.

Briefing.com said the tranquil trading pattern on Wall Street suggest investors are back in "fear of missing out" mode.

In US economic data, traders this week will get updates on new home sales, consumer confidence, durable goods, and the latest readings on personal consumption expenditures, which will indicate the degree to which the rebound and Washington's spending policies are pushing up prices.

Stocks have been volatile in part due to fears inflation could lead to an abrupt shift in Federal Reserve policy -- despite the central bank's assurances to the contrary. But some analysts believe the market has already priced in this risk, while others point to an upside from some inflation.

- Good inflation? -

The "stock market loves three or four percent inflation. It gives companies pricing power, which we haven't had for the past 10 years in what was ostensibly an inflationary environment," Ogg said.

"A little bit of inflation is good for corporate earnings."

Oil prices gained as market watchers noted questions over the prospects of a revived Iranian nuclear deal.

Statements from diplomats "made it clear that the sense of optimism that was pressuring prices last week was probably overdone, and there is still a lot of work that needs to be done before a final agreement is finished," said Robert Yawger of Mizuho Securities.

Analysts also pointed to the improving outlook for demand.

"There's a lot of vaccine-driven demand optimism in the US and Europe that's likely to be further boosted by the summer driving season next month," noted Kim Kwangrae, of Samsung Futures.

Bitcoin jumped to around $38,000, after dropping again Sunday to around $30,000 as the crypto currency continues to experience volatility after a series of tweets by tech tycoon Elon Musk and warnings of a crackdown by China.

- Key figures around 2030 GMT -

New York - Dow: UP 0.5 percent at 34,393.98 (close)

New York - S&P 500: UP 1.0 percent at 4,197.05 (close)

New York - Nasdaq: UP 1.4 percent at 13,661.17 (close)

London - FTSE 100: UP 0.5 percent at 7,051.59 (close)

Paris - CAC 40: UP 0.4 percent at 6,408.49 (close)

Frankfurt - DAX 30: UP 0.4 percent at 15,437.51 (closed)

EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.9 percent at 4,035.58 (close)

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 0.2 percent at 28,364.61 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng Index: DOWN 0.2 percent at 28,412.26 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: UP 0.3 percent at 3,497.28 (close)

Euro/dollar: UP at $1.2214 from $1.2182 at 2100 GMT on Friday

Pound/dollar: UP at $1.4155 from $1.4150

Euro/pound: UP at 86.28 pence from 86.05 pence

Dollar/yen: DOWN at 108.76 yen from 108.96 yen

Brent North Sea crude: UP 3.0 percent at $68.46 per barrel

West Texas Intermediate: UP 3.9 percent at $66.05 per barrel