As Virus Worries Fade, Asian Equities Follow Wall Street Higher

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Stocks are off to a strong start on Wall Street on Tuesday, with investors betting that the new strain of the COVID-19 virus would not represent a significant danger to the economy. The S&P 500 gained 1.4 percent in the first few minutes of trading, adding to its gains from the previous day.

The Nasdaq, which is heavily weighted toward technology, gained 2%, and small-company stocks gained as well. Utilities, for example, trailed the rest of the market. Treasury rates increased, but crude oil prices increased by nearly 3%. European markets were also up significantly, while Asian markets finished higher overnight.

Global stock markets rose with Wall Street on Tuesday, as concerns over the coronavirus’s newest strain subsided and China published stronger-than-expected November trade numbers.

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London and Frankfurt started the day higher. Shanghai, Tokyo, and Hong Kong all made strides. For the second day in a row, oil prices increased by more than $1 a barrel. Travel and commercial restrictions may be eased as a result.

Reports from South Africa, where omicron was originally discovered, suggesting hospitals have not been inundated “is driving some optimism” among traders who sold earlier, according to IG’s Yeap Jun Rong.

In early trade, the FTSE 100 in London rose 1% to 7,302.61, while the DAX in Frankfurt rose 1.6 percent to 15,623.97. The Paris CAC 40 rose 1.7 percent to 6,982.63.

On Wall Street, the S&P 500 futures were up 1%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were up 0.8%.

The S&P 500 gained 1.2 percent on Monday, while the Dow gained 1.9 percent. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose by less than 0.1 percent.

In Asia, the Shanghai Composite Index jumped 0.2 percent to 3,595.09 after November imports increased 31.7 percent year on year, indicating that domestic demand may be improving.

The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo rose 1.9 percent to 28,455.60, while the Hang Seng in Hong Kong rose 2.6 percent to 23,983.66.

Seoul’s Kospi rose 0.6 percent to 2,991.72, while Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 rose 1% to 7,313.90.

The Sensex in India increased by 2% to 57,871.21. Markets in New Zealand and Southeast Asia grew.

On Wall Street, more than 85% of the S&P 500’s equities climbed on Monday, driven by technology and banking.

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