Stock markets on Wall Street started the first trading day of August with gains on Monday. Investors reacted with relief to comments from Lael Brainard, one of the Federal Reserve’s policymakers. She said she did not expect the Fed to announce the phasing out of corona support at the annual meeting in Jackson Hole at the end of this month.
Furthermore, traders look at politics in Washington. There, an infrastructure package from President Joe Biden appears to be being passed with support from both Democrats and Republicans. However, at $550 billion, that package is much smaller than the $2 trillion that Biden originally aimed for.
On the macroeconomic front, there will be data on industrial activity. It is expected to grow rapidly again, just like in Europe.
The Dow-Jones index rose 0.7 percent after a few minutes at 35,164 points. The broad-based S&P 500 rose 0.4 percent to 4,415 points and tech Nasdaq rose 0.1 percent to 14,691 points.
Payment service provider Square has announced it is acquiring Australian Afterpay for $29 billion. Afterpay makes it easy for consumers to pay for their online purchases later and is used by many young people as an alternative to a credit card. These young people are an interesting target group for Square. In addition, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey’s company does not yet offer consumer loans. Square was up about 2 percent.
Sports retail chain Foot Locker (minus 2.7 percent) is taking over Eurostar, the owner of retail chain WSS. Foot Locker pays $750 million for that. At the same time, the Americans paid 360 million dollars for Text Trading, the parent company of the Japanese retail chain Atmos.
Aerospace parts supplier Parker Hannifin announced the acquisition of British industry peers Meggit for nearly $9 billion. The British government has already announced that it wants to assess the takeover critically. Parker Hannifin rose nearly 2 percent.
Oil prices fell after signals for economic growth in China became somewhat less rosy. As a result, US oil became 1 percent cheaper and cost $73.21 a barrel. Brent oil fell 0.9 percent to $74.74 a barrel.