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US and European equities were set to end the week higher after a volatile few days, as fears about the Delta variant of coronavirus were soothed by strong corporate earnings and continued central bank support for financial markets.
The S&P 500 gained 0.8 per cent, putting Wall Street’s blue-chip share index on course for a record high even after it fell as much as 2 per cent on Monday. The technology-focused Nasdaq Composite rose 0.7 per cent.
The Stoxx Europe 600 index, which had its worst session of the year on Monday with a 2.3 per cent drop, gained 1.1 per cent and was up 1.5 per cent for the week.
The dominance of the highly transmissible Delta variant sparked fears about global economic growth slowing and isolation measures exacerbating the supply chain bottlenecks that have contributed to inflation surges.
Such concerns were swept aside,…