After a dismal couple weeks, the benchmark U.S. index had its best weekly gain of 2012.  The S&P 500 rose 3.8%, giving it its best week since December 2011.

 
China fueled gains earlier in the week by cutting its key lending rate by a quarter of a percentage point in an effort to stimulate economic growth in the country. In recent weeks, China had reported sluggish manufacturing figures.

 

 
Markets also rose on investor speculation that Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke is gearing up for another round of economic stimulus.  Mr. Bernanke testified before Congress on Thursday and said that that the Fed is “prepared to take action as needed to protect the U.S. economy in the event that financial stresses escalate.”

 
The TSX finished positive for the week, but energy stocks continue to weight down the index.  On Friday, the price of oil fell to $84.4 a barrel.

 
In Europe, Germany’s exports decreased 1.7 per cent in April, which was higher than economist predictions. Meanwhile, expectations are also rising that Spain is set to request an aid package for its banks as early as tomorrow.

 

 

 

 

Market Recap (as of June 8, 2012)

  • The TSX closed at 11500, up 139 points or 1.22% over the past week. YTD the TSX is down -3.81%
  • The DOW closed at 12554, up 435 points or 3.59% over the past week. YTD the DOW is up 2.75%
  • The S&P closed at 1326, up 48 points or 3.76% over the past week. YTD the S&P is up 5.41%.
  • The Nasdaq closed at 2858, up 111 points or 4.04% over the past week. YTD the Nasdaq is up 9.71%.
  • Gold closed at 1594, down -12.00 points or -0.75% over the past week. YTD gold is up 1.85%.
  • Oil closed at 84.4, up 1.12 points or 1.34% over the past week. YTD oil is down -14.66%.
  • The USD/CAD closed at 0.9733, up 0.0128 points or 1.33% over the past week. YTD the CAD/USD is down -0.66%.