Advertisement

Stocks march to record highs

Stock markets have reached new highs, pushing the gold price down to a three-month low.

US stocks, which tend to set the tone for world markets, hit a new record this week, as the S&P 500 index climbed above 1,900.

Meanwhile, European stocks hit a new six-year high (measured by the FTSE Eurofirst index).And Japan's Nikkei perked up to its highest level since April. The good news pushed gold down to a three-month low, below $1,300 an ounce.

What the commentators said

yet more easy money

Advertisement - Article continues below

Markets also focused on the positive aspect of the European elections: Italy's reformist government held out against the populists.

Yet this good cheer could evaporate quickly a correction looks overdue.In the last few years, stocks haven't been driven by profit growth but by valuations in other words, investors have been willing to pay more for a given pound of earnings. The fundamentals need to catch up, says Stephanie Deo of UBS. Yet, first-quarter results haven't been great.

693-S-P-500

So, earnings disappointments look inevitable, especially with overoptimistic forecasts. Profits for companies in Germany's DAX index, for instance, are expected to jump by 20% in the first quarter of 2015.

Any escalation in Ukraine could also damage the rally, while analysts may also be underestimating the impact of the end of China's property bubble. Throw in alarming levels of insider sales in Europe and the US, notes Wirtschaftswoche, and the rally looks ever more precarious.

Advertisement
Advertisement

Recommended

The British equity market is shrinking
Stockmarkets

The British equity market is shrinking

British startups are abandoning public stockmarkets and turning to deep-pocketed Silicon Valley venture capitalists for their investment needs.
8 Nov 2019
There are lots of reasons to be bearish – but you should stick with the bulls
Stockmarkets

There are lots of reasons to be bearish – but you should stick with the bulls

There are plenty of reasons to be gloomy about the stockmarkets. But the trend remains up, says Dominic Frisby. And you don’t want to bet against the …
17 Jul 2019
Good news on jobs scares US stockmarkets
Economy

Good news on jobs scares US stockmarkets

June brought the best monthly US jobs growth of the year, but stockmarkets were not best pleased.
11 Jul 2019
How Covid-19 sparked the return of the day trader
Investment strategy

How Covid-19 sparked the return of the day trader

Lockdown boredom has unleashed a horde of speculators on US stocks, with predictable consequences.
7 Jul 2020

Most Popular

House price crash: UK property prices are falling – so where next?
Property

House price crash: UK property prices are falling – so where next?

With UK property prices falling for the first time in eight years, are we about to see a house price crash? John Stepek looks at what’s behind the sli…
2 Jul 2020
The end of the bond bull market and the return of inflation
Inflation

The end of the bond bull market and the return of inflation

Central bank stimulus, surging post-lockdown demand and the end of the 40-year bond bull market. It all points to inflation, says John Stepek. Here’s …
30 Jun 2020
How “support” and “resistance” can help you spot trading opportunities
Sponsored

How “support” and “resistance” can help you spot trading opportunities

Technical analysis can help traders manage risk and decide where to enter and exit a trade. One simple form of technical analysis is the concept of “s…
6 Jul 2020