On Monday, world stocks were close to their record highs as investors balanced optimism about a rebounding European economy and the positive U.S. jobs report with concerns about COVID-19’s highly transmissible Delta variant.
After data showing that eurozone businesses grew at an unprecedented rate of activity in June, the STOXXX index 600-leading European companies was 0.3% higher. This reversed earlier losses.
British service firms saw their activity rise in June, though at a slower pace.
French shares also recovered losses from Olivier Veran, the Health Minister, who warned France that it could be in the midst of a fourth round of the pandemic.
COVID-19 angst also weighed on shares in Japan: The Nikkei fell 0.6% to a two-week low following a surge in infections in Tokyo, just weeks before the city hosts the Olympics.
A survey revealed that Japan’s services sector activity declined for the 17th consecutive month in June.
The MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares was not available outside Japan. It was therefore flat.
China’s blue-chip stock market index rose 0.1% from its earlier losses. Beijing pledged to support its tech sector and countered concerns about Didi Global, a ride-hailing company that was being investigated.
The MSCI All Country World Index closed at 724.66 last Monday, a record. It was 0.1% lower on Monday.
The extended Fourth of July weekend saw U.S. markets close for trading, which made trading less efficient than usual.
Valentina holds a journalism degree from Moscow State University and started her career as an art critic covering the film industry and urban architecture.