Stock-market investors brace for rocky April with worst of coronavirus news yet to come


Stocks suffered sharp first-quarter fall as pandemic triggers global economic shutdown

April will pose a crucial test for stock-market investors looking for signs that the worst of the market carnage triggered by the global COVID-19 pandemic is past, as the outbreak continues to claim lives and promises historic, near-term economic pain.

Bears contend the sheer uncertainty surrounding the impact of the pandemic is likely to pave the way to further waves of selling.

“The coming weeks will be a blizzard of bad news — both on the economy and public health,” said Zach Pandl, macro strategist at Goldman Sachs, in a Monday note. “We doubt that markets will be able to price out adverse tail risks against that backdrop, and new challenges might emerge, including sovereign downgrades, FX peg breaks, or a wave of business failures.”

Stocks fell in early trade Wednesday. President Donald Trump late Tuesday warned that a “rough” two weeks lies ahead, with the White House projecting that the pandemic could result in a U.S. death toll of 100,000 to 240,000.

But some investors and analysts contend that while markets are likely to remain volatile, the stock market’s bounceback last week after tumbling with record speed from all-time highs into a bear market, gives hope that March 23 lows for major indexes may more or less hold.

Even hopeful investors often caution that bear markets are typically volatile and often see sharp rebounds before retesting lows or going on to decline even further before finding a bottom. But the fast and sizable policy response by central banks and governments have some market watchers arguing that the probability that the recent lows will hold may be better than in past major selloffs…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.