U.S. stocks weathered a late-Friday plunge to post their best week in over 10 years, buoyed by an unprecedented stimulus package meant to blunt the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Treasuries gained and oil slipped.
The S&P 500 Index climbed 10 per cent this week, its biggest gain since March 2009, on the strength of a record three-day rally. But that rally sputtered Friday, and the benchmark plunged just minutes before the close, illustrating how tenuous any gains can be, even with a US$2 trillion spending deal heading to the president’s desk for his signature. The S&P remains 25 per cent below its February record, and the Cboe Volatility Index is on track for a 10th straight close above 60. It averaged 18.7 in the past year. The Dow Jones Industrial Average had its best week since 1938, even as all but two of its 30 members declined Friday.