Global markets, markets in North America: New data on US, China, Europe sectors


The latest economic numbers are helping lift markets across the globe.

The pace of growth in the United States’ factory output accelerated in February at its fastest pace in more than four years, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

The data helps bolster expectations for economic growth in the United States in the first quarter, a point of contention for the administration of President Donald Trump that has tried to pull the Federal Reserve back from raising interest rates.

China’s premier on Friday said that his country is determined to build a more resilient and powerful economy, pointing to growing resistance from low interest rates and a strong yuan, as well as more investment in rural development.

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Overall, he did not offer a timeline for changes to the market’s structure.

U.S. stocks gained Friday, with markets bouncing back from declines the day before and giving back the early loss. Traders shook off downbeat economic readings from China and Europe and instead returned to their favorite value themes.

Canada’s biggest share index by value benefited. The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S&P/TSX composite index surged 1.32% to 16,210.77.

The biggest winners were energy and financial stocks, sectors that tend to do well in times of rising inflation and rising interest rates. The S&P/TSX Capped Financials index rose 1.11%, the S&P/TSX Oil and Gas Exploration and Production index gained 1.59% and the S&P/TSX Capped Energy index gained 1.13%.

Stocks also got a lift from a rebound in banking shares. It has been a rough week for them, with lenders forced to pay back billions in borrowing last month from the European Central Bank. The lenders are also under pressure from higher U.S. borrowing costs.

Friday’s gains came amid a rebound for broader equity markets. European markets rebounded after heavy losses the day before, and Asian benchmarks climbed, bolstered by results from technology companies such as Google’s parent, Alphabet Inc.

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