Signs of resurgent US economy push stocks to highs


Investors propelled US stocks to a record high last week, buoyed by declining unemployment and advancements in the treatment of Covid-19 giving hope to a resurgent economy.

The S&P 500 index of blue-chip US stocks, seen as a benchmark for the health of corporate America, rose 2 per cent for the week to Friday, its best weekly performance in four and half months and its third straight week notching a new all-time high.

The index was led higher by companies beaten down during the coronavirus pandemic such as airlines, cruise operators and casinos, following Pfizer’s announcement that its antiviral pill successfully reduced hospitalisation rates stemming from Covid-19 by 90 per cent.

Evidence that the US economy is pulling itself out of the pandemic-induced downturn further bolstered sentiment, with the latest jobs report showing a pick-up in job growth across nearly all sectors after several months of more lacklustre gains. More than 500,000 new…

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