U.S. stocks rallied, with the S&P 500 posting its biggest weekly increase since July, as traders bet lawmakers are moving closer to providing more fiscal stimulus. Treasury yields were mostly flat, and the dollar slipped.
The benchmark equity gauge rose for a third day with President Donald Trump saying he now wants an even bigger package than what Democrats offered. For the week, the index finished up 3.8 percent. The tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 jumped 1.5 percent Friday, with chip maker Xilinx Inc. leaping on a report it’s in advanced talks for a $30 billion takeover by rival Advanced Micro Devices Inc.
“We’ve had this whipsaw around wondering if there will be more fiscal stimulus, which I think we desperately need to keep the economy rolling,” said Ron Temple, head of U.S. equity at Lazard Asset Management LLC.
European stocks rose as a host of companies raised outlooks, from Denmark’s drugmaker Novo Nordisk A/S to German online clothing retailer Zalando SE. Stocks fell in Spain, where the government’s cabinet met to declare a state of emergency for Madrid to control COVID-19. Italy’s 10-year bond yield fell a record low.
Investors ended a volatile week with a risk-on attitude. With Trump recuperating from COVID-19 in the final stretch of the election campaign, they’re increasingly betting a Joe Biden victory is likely. Speculation is moving now to whether Democrats will sweep Congress, too, and then enact massive stimulus.
“There’s also the possibly you could see a Democratic sweep in the election and that raises the prospects for higher taxes, which would be a negative, but also for really pronounced stimulus and that could take some of the more extreme risks off the table,” said Giorgio Caputo, senior fund manager at J O Hambro Capital Management.Elsewhere, Vanguard Group Inc. returned about $21 billion in managed assets to government clients in China as part of a global shift to focus on low-cost funds for individual investors, according to people familiar with the matter.
Oil in New York edged lower with Hurricane Delta’s top sustained winds weakening as the storm approached the U.S. Gulf Coast.