Equities updates

US stocks ended Friday at a new high, reversing steep losses at the start of the week, as fears about the Delta variant of coronavirus were soothed by strong corporate earnings and continued central bank support for financial markets.

The S&P 500 climbed 1 per cent, lifting the index’s weekly gain to 2 per cent and its advance for the year above 17 per cent. The technology-focused Nasdaq Composite rose just over 1 per cent, giving the index its strongest weekly advance since April.

The Stoxx Europe 600 index, which had its worst session of the year on Monday with a 2.3 per cent drop, gained 1.1 per cent on Friday and was up 1.5 per cent for the week.

The dominance of the highly transmissible Delta virus variant has helped to stir fears that global economic growth could slow. Such concerns, however, have been overshadowed by…

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