Global stocks rose on Friday amid strengthening economic conditions to get March trading off to a positive start. European and Asian stocks led the charge, while U.S. equities also realized marginal gains.
European stocks secured a weekly gain, with the Stoxx Europe 600 index embarking on a 0.6% rise. Asian stocks rose by about 1%, with Hong Kong’s Hang Seng and Tokyo’s Nikkei leading the charge. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 1.1%.
Futures on the S&P 500 ticked 0.1% higher, as did those on the Nasdaq 100. Contracts on the Dow Jones Industrial Average remained little changed.
Barclays Plc strategists led by Emmanuel Cau remarked that global equity markets appear to be responding well to a positive growth outlook. “The rates-equity-growth paradigm of last year (higher inflation driving rates higher, pressuring valuations just as growth was falling dramatically) may be changing,” they wrote in a note.
Amid the rise in equities, bonds also halted their decline. The US 10-year Treasury yield has retreated from its three-month high, declining five basis points to 4.01%.
Looking at commodities, brent crude fell 0.1% to $84.65 a barrel while spot gold gained 0.5%, now trading at $1,845.67 per ounce.