After AstraZeneca resumed phase III trials of its much anticipated Oxford vaccine, the Asian shares kept a stronghold with rekindled vaccine hopes. Though the market still remains cautious with a big upcoming week with central bank meetings in the United States, Japan, and the United Kingdom.
MSCI’s biggest market index share in the Asia-Pacific region outside Japan was up by 0.7% and this marked the second round of gains for the US-based finance company. Furthermore, in Australia, the shares climbed by 0.6% and Japan’s Nikkei added 0.7%. Chinese shares too started strong with the blue-chip index marking a rise of 0.6%. In a rather mixed week on Wall Street, there was a jump of over 1% for the US stock futures, the S&P 500 e-minis.
Friday marked six months since WHO announced Covid-19 as pandemic on March 11. Past months have seen markets tumbling and major economies sliding into unprecedented recession. Millions have lost jobs across the nations. This has prompted central banks to release stimulus in unmatched proportions.
The policy bazooka has buoyed markets, leading to the S&P500 up by 22%, 10-year Treasury yields dropping 20.4 basis points and the greenback plunging 3.3%. By far the Australian dollar has been the best-performing currency, recording a rise of 11.9%.
AstraZeneca announced on the weekend of resuming phase 3 trials of the Oxford vaccine that it is developing with Oxford University. The trial was halted after a participant developed an unexpected illness in the UK. The Oxford vaccine is the most anticipated and promising vaccine for coronavirus. The halting had dropped the market with slashed hopes. The resuming of the trial has floated the Asian markets once again.