Dow Opens Up More Than 1,200 Points

Trader on NYSE floor

United States stock markets surged at the open of trading on Friday, in a volatile week that has seen coronavirus fears kill off the 11-year bull run in stocks, and sink USA equity markets to record lows not seen since the 1987 crash.

Stocks are opening sharply higher on Wall Street a day after the worst drop since 1987.

Travel stocks, hammered in the rout, were trading higher, with the S&P 1500 airlines index .SPCOMAIR up 3.66%.

In a televised address that also included support measures for the economy, US President Donald Trump imposed restrictions on travel from Europe to the United States, shocking investors and travellers. The stock provided the biggest boost to the blue-chip Dow index. At various times in the past decade the return on the S&P 500 has exceeded growth in worker pay by the most on record.

London Stock Exchange also had its worst day since 1987.

It ended the week down 2,458.69 points from its close of 16,175.02 on Friday, March 6.

The S&P 500 fell 261.35 points, or 8.8%. Friday's surge was the biggest one-day percentage gain for the S&P 500 since Oct 28, 2008.

The Nasdaq rose 673.07 points, or 9.3%, to 7,874.88.

The Australian market has already lost more than $500 billion or 25 per cent of its value since February 20, when it plummeted from record highs.

Gap Inc climbed 7.1% as it forecast 2020 profit above market expectations.

Thursday morning, Princess Cruises, which has had several ships hit by coronavirus outbreaks, announced that it will pause operations of its 18 cruise ships globally for 60 days.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 4.73-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 2.95-to-1 ratio favored advancers. The S&P 500 gained 2% while the Nasdaq Composite advanced 2.1%.

Meanwhile, Trump in a tweet Friday continued to press a payroll tax cut, which has received a cool response from both fellow Republicans in Congress as well as Democrats.

In his address Wednesday evening, Trump blamed Europe for worsening the COVID-19 pandemic in the US instead of revealing solutions to stem the medical crisis while pushing forward an economic stimulus package. Jay Powell and group are putting us at a decided economic & physiological disadvantage. Earlier this week, the Fed said it would inject more than $1.5 trillion into short-term borrowing markets to avoid a meltdown.

US stock futures also pointed to a higher open, with Nasdaq futures up 5%.

"Markets are quite prepared for a period of falling output". In modern history, no rally has been more closely associated with the central bank - and its unprecedented experiments in monetary policy - than this one.

Canada's main stock index staged almost a 10 per cent rebound on Friday as hopes rose for government stimulus to ease the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak and a crash in oil prices.

Trading resumed after 15 minutes. European markets fell 12 percent in one of their worst days ever, even after the European Central Bank pledged to buy more bonds and offer more help for the economy. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 0.91% from 0.85% late Thursday.

Markets worldwide have been on the retreat as worries over the economic fallout from the coronavirus crisis deepen.

"Lagarde has no experience with markets and that became obvious yesterday", said Christoph Rieger, head of rates and credit research at Commerzbank. The death toll in the USA climbed to 39, with over 1,300 infections.

Ryan Detrick, senior market strategist at LPL Financial, said it appears that the government is inching closer to a stimulus plan that will help cushion the financial impact to people and businesses. The vast majority of people recover from the virus in a few weeks.

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