Stocks pile on gains with exuberance taking over

Claire Ballentine and Todd White

Stocks extended this week’s rally, with a gauge of global equities rising for an eighth straight day, as investors clung to optimism for a quick economic recovery from the pandemic.

Banks led the S&P 500 toward a three-month high, with four stocks gaining for every one that fell. The dollar dropped to its weakest since early March while gold and Treasuries also slumped as investors turned away from havens after U.S. private payrolls showed fewer job losses than forecast in May.

European stocks jumped the most in two weeks, led by automakers and insurers. The euro strengthened for a seventh session as data showed the region’s economic activity increased in May to the highest in three months after an easing of lockdowns.

Amid the exuberance, a popular technical momentum indicator is close to flashing a warning sign for the S&P 500 and valuations for global stocks have climbed to their highest level versus estimated earnings since the early 2000s. The rally has surprised some analysts who predict a long road back to normalcy following the pandemic. They also point to risks including tense U.S.-China relations, the possibility for a second wave of infections and the uprisings in U.S. cities against police brutality.

“The market is climbing the wall of worry right now and it is very, very uncomfortable for many investors,” said Gerald Sparrow, chief investment officer of the Sparrow Growth Fund, which has outperformed 95% of its peers this year.

Elsewhere, oil dipped after Bloomberg reported that a meeting between OPEC and its allies is unlikely to happen this week over issues of cheating.

Shares in South Korea led Asian equities higher after the country detailed a third round of fiscal stimulus, while Singapore’s benchmark entered a bull market. MSCI’s gauge of emerging-market stocks climbed close a three-month high.

Here are some key events coming up:

The European Central Bank is expected to top up its rescue program with an additional 500 billion euros of asset purchases at a meeting on Thursday. Anything less than an expansion would be a big shock, Bloomberg Economics said.

The U.S. labor market report on Friday will probably show American unemployment soared to 19.5% in May, the highest since the 1930s.

These are the main moves in markets:


  • The S&P 500 Index rose 1% as of 12:26 p.m. New York time.
  • The Nasdaq 100 Index was little changed.
  • The Stoxx Europe 600 Index gained 2.5%.
  • The MSCI All-Country World Index climbed 1.5%.


  • The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index slid 0.4%.
  • The euro gained 0.6% to $1.1239.
  • The British pound increased 0.43 to $1.2588.
  • The Japanese yen slipped 0.2% to 108.88 per dollar.


  • The yield on 10-year Treasuries rose seven basis points to 0.75%.
  • Germany’s 10-year yield climbed six basis points to -0.36%.
  • Britain’s 10-year yield increased five basis points to 0.27%.
  • Australia’s 10-year yield rose six basis points to 0.96%.


  • WTI crude fell 1.2% to $36.37 a barrel.
  • Gold weakened 1.6% to $1,699.66 an ounce.
  • The Bloomberg Commodity Index fell 0.1%.