A key US stock index has hit a new high despite ongoing worries about the sharp economic impact of the pandemic.
The S&P 500, one of the widest and most prominent US market measures, inched higher on Tuesday to close at 3,389.78 – about three points above its 19 February record.
Other US indexes have also rebounded.
The Nasdaq hit another record after surpassing its prior high in June while the Dow Jones Industrial Average is within about 5% of its February record.
US shares have been on an upward path since 23 March, when America’s central bank announced a slew of unprecedented economic support measures.
But when the pandemic set in and markets tumbled more than 33%, such a rapid market recovery seemed nearly unthinkable, said William Delwiche, an investment strategist at Baird.
“To be even having this conversation right now is remarkable,” he said.
He said the strength and speed of the rebound were especially surprising, given America’s continuing struggle to contain the coronavirus and ongoing concerns about the economy. The US saw its sharpest quarterly contraction on record in the three months to July, amid widespread lockdowns.
“It’s not surprising that we had a meaningful recovery, but that over the last couple of months we’ve continued to rally… I’m shocked that we’re having this conversation,” Delwiche said.