Sunday, February 13, 2011

QE2 Boosting Stocks Around the Globe

How much did global stock markets like the launch of QE2 by the Federal Reserve last week? A lot.

This week is off to a more middling start. European shares are edging lower after Asian stock markets had another solid day, led by Tokyo’s 1% gain.

Let’s recap QE2 week. Asia – where a lot of those hundreds of billions of bucks are expected to end up – did best. The Nikkei gained 4.6% for the week, the Shanghai Composite rose 5.1% and the Hong Kong Hang Seng soared 7.7% to a nearly 3-year high. The Bombay Sensex 30 added 4.9% to clip a new record close while Australia and South Korea each gained 3%.

Europe’s big bourses all rose, with the FTSE 100 (up 3.4%) and the DAX (up 2.3%) both closing at fresh 2010 and 52-week highs. The Paris CAC-40 gained 2.2% and is a sliver off a new 2010 closing high.

On the home front, the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 2.9% and is now up 18% since July 2. The Nasdaq Composite gained 2.9% and 23% since July 2. The S&P 500 jumped 3.6% and has rallied 20% from July 2. The Dow Jones U.S. Total Stock Markets Index gained 3.7% and is up 21% from July 2.

All in, plenty of green. Makes you wonder why global leaders are so irked with Big Ben Bernanke.

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