Global stock markets climb on lockdown easing hopes

Tuesday, 26 May 2020 01:45 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

PARIS, AFP: Global stock markets climbed yesterday, buoyed by the prospect of further easing of coronavirus lockdowns despite sharp increases in case rates in some countries such as Brazil.

In European trade yesterday, Paris rose 2.2% and Frankfurt jumped 2.9%, helped by a more positive German business confidence report for May compared with a disastrous showing in April.

Public holidays in Britain and the US meant trade was relatively low key however. 

In Asia, Tokyo ended 1.7% higher, Sydney added more than two%, Shanghai put on 0.2%. Hong Kong recovered from a morning drop to edge up 0.1%, after losses of more than 5% Friday and despite violent weekend protests at China's plan to impose a security law that would effectively suppress the former British colony's pro-democracy movement.

On the downside, an upsurge in Sino-US tensions, especially over Chinese plans to introduce a national security law in Hong Kong, made for some caution.

Over the weekend, US President Donald Trump imposed travel limits on Brazil, now the second worst affected country after the US, reminding markets that while the coronavirus outlook is better, the crisis is far from over.

Japan meanwhile lifted a state of emergency in Tokyo, while Spain and Italy are preparing to reopen their borders to kick-start their crucial tourism sectors.

Greece, Germany and the Czech Republic are also on course to allow bars and restaurants to resume service, while primary schools in parts of England are due to restart from next month.

“Global investors are continuing to map the reopening of global economies to the overall risk narrative,” said Stephen Innes of AxiCorp.

“The global stock markets are moving higher with positive changes in mobility data. According to recent mobility data, the global economy has taken a giant step toward normality in the last week.”