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US, European stocks end at records on US stimulus, Brexit deal

·3-min read
American taxpayers will be getting checks in the mail again after US President Donald Trump signed the second stimulus package

US and European stocks pushed into record territory on Monday, buoyed by a pandemic recovery package agreed in the US and Britain's Brexit deal with the EU.

All three major US stock indices finished at all-time highs, a feat reached earlier in the day by Germany's DAX index.

"The stock market is in a celebration mode this morning," said Patrick J. O'Hare at Briefing.com.

The jump came after US President Donald Trump signed a $900 billion (735 billion euros) stimulus bill late Sunday, averting a government shutdown, providing additional payments to unemployed workers and extending an eviction moratorium by a month.

Trump had previously refused to sign the relief package, but reversed his stance Sunday, removing a key uncertainty for markets, which remain in a bullish posture in anticipation of better economic growth in 2021 following coronavirus vaccine approvals.

The latest vaccine nearing authorization is from Oxford-AstraZeneca, with British media reporting over the weekend that it is expected to be cleared for use on January 4.

Frankfurt's blue-chip DAX index ended up 1.5 percent at 13,790.29 points, a record closing level.

In Paris, the CAC 40 rose 1.2 percent, while the stock market in London was closed for a holiday.

On December 24, Britain and the European Union agreed a post-Brexit deal that allayed the threat of disruption to business on January 1, when measures extending free trade are set to end.

EU states approved the measure on Monday, and it will take effect provisionally while European lawmakers consider it after the start of the year.

The Brexit deal and the US aid package were pushing the DAX to "a new high," said Jochen Stanzl, an analyst at CMC Markets.

The market is "breathing a sigh of relief" after the Brexit deal, independent analyst Timo Emden added.

Several EU nations including France, Germany, Italy and Spain began rolling out their first Covid-19 vaccinations on Sunday, although the supply is limited.

"For the markets, it remains crucial to get Covid-19 under control as soon as possible," Emden said.

- US shutdown avoided -

The emergency US package is part of a larger spending bill that, with Trump's signature, will avoid a government shutdown on Tuesday.

The president's turnaround came after a day marked by calls from across the political spectrum for action to avert a financial and social disaster in the world's largest economy, especially among the most vulnerable.

"For Americans that have been endlessly checking their mailboxes for a stimulus check, this is the best holiday present anyone could ask for," said Axi strategist Stephen Innes.

"The stimulus balloon will allow the markets to navigate better the number of new air pockets... due to the virus's latest variant," he added.

Markets have recently been shaken by news of the emergence of a new variant of the coronavirus that authorities believe may spread more easily.

Asian markets traded mixed on Monday.

- Key figures around 2245 GMT -

New York - Dow: UP 0.7 percent at 30,403.97 (close)

New York - S&P 500: UP 0.9 percent at 3,735.36 (close)

New York - Nasdaq: UP 0.7 percent at 12,899.42 (close)

Frankfurt DAX 30: UP 1.5 percent at 13,790.29 (close)

Paris CAC 40: UP 1.2 percent at 5,588.38 (close)

EURO STOXX 50: UP 0.9 percent at 3,575.41 (close)

London - FTSE 100: UP 0.1 percent at 6,502.11 (Thursday close)

Tokyo - Nikkei 225: UP 0.7 percent at 26,854.03 (close)

Hong Kong - Hang Seng: DOWN 0.3 percent at 26,314.63 (close)

Shanghai - Composite: FLAT at 3,397.29 (close)

Pound/dollar: DOWN at 1.3451 from $1.3560 late Friday

Euro/pound: UP at 90.71 from 88.98 pence

Euro/dollar: UP at 1.2213 from $1.2193

Dollar/yen: UP at 103.76 from 103.43 yen

West Texas Intermediate: DOWN 1.2 percent at $47.66 per barrel

Brent North Sea crude: DOWN 0.8 percent at $50.86 per barrel

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