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US stocks set new records as Delta variant worries remain

US stocks rallied to record highs on Friday, rebounding from Thursday’s selloff.

The Dow (INDU) closed 1.3% higher, or 448 points, while the S&P 500 (SPX) rose 1.1%. The Nasdaq Composite (COMP) was up nearly 1%. All three indexes reached new all-time highs. They also logged gains for the shortened Independence Day week as a whole. On Thursday, news about the spread of the Covid-19 Delta variant weighed on the market, as did concerns of bond market wonkiness — the 10-year US Treasury yield fell to its lowest rate since February. That tumult combined to knock stocks off their record highs.

And while the Delta variant remains a threat to the newly reopened economy, the market seemed to have brushed off its worries on Friday. The bond market also reversed itself from Thursday’s close: The 10-year Treasury yield bounced back to 1.36% around the time of the stock market close. “Like a game of seesaw, the falling bond market appeared to give stocks a boost early Friday,” wrote TD Ameritrade chief market strategist JJ Kinahan in a blog post. Still, US investors aren’t blind to the uncertainties playing out in the global economy. Australia and other countries are tightening their Covid protocols, and the Tokyo Olympics will be held in empty stadiums — all of which is likely to weigh on global stock markets in the coming weeks.

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