Big open. Stocks gapped significantly higher today, as Gilead’s new antiviral drug to combat COVID-19 showed promise at a Chicago hospital. Globally, stocks were firmly in the green as well, with optimism for opening up global economies growing.
LPL Research on SiriusXM Radio. LPL Financial Senior Market Strategist Ryan Detrick is scheduled to be a guest today, April 17, on the “Behind the Markets” radio show with Professor Jeremy Siegel and Jeremy Schwartz for a full hour, 12–1 p.m. ET. You can listen live on SiriusXM Satellite channel 132 or for free here.
Good news Friday. President Trump announced a three-step process for the United States to open up over time, giving states the ability to open on their own terms, as long as the guidelines are followed. Besides the Gilead news, Boeing announced it would begin building planes in Seattle as soon as next week.
China’s first GDP contraction on record. First quarter gross domestic product (GDP) in China contracted 6.8% year over year, near the consensus forecast of a 6.5% decline. Industrial production held up relatively well, falling 1.1% in March, while fixed asset investment shrank 16% and retail sales dropped 15.8%. Chinese officials also noted the outbreak has been stopped and the operational resumption is accelerating, highlighting its economy’s place as a leader out of this global crisis.
Did fixed income ETFs pass the test? The fastest bear market decline ever and accompanying disruptions in credit markets in March provided a tough test for exchange-traded funds (ETFs). With a big assist from the Federal Reserve, which announced it would purchase fixed income ETFs, and increasing optimism around an economic rebound, fixed income ETFs seem to be functioning normally again as we discuss today on the LPL Research blog.
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