US stocks volatility soars on the pandemic news

Stocks jumped, continuing a tumultuous week for markets driven by uncertainty about the potential impact of the Omicron variant on public health and the economy. The S&P 500 gained 1.42% to 4577.10. The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 1.82% falling to 34639.79 while the Nasdaq Composite was up 0.83% at 15381.32. Front- and belly of the Treasuries curve continues to trade heavy vs long-end as a swath of Federal Reserve officials ramped up rhetoric on a faster pace of rate hikes.

European stocks fell as tech shares slumped and investors once again attempted to price in risks from the omicron Covid-19 variant as more cases surface across the globe. Stoxx 600 Europe Index lost 1.15% on Thursday, DAX declined by 1.35%, and CAC 40 dropped 1.25%, while FTSE 100 was down 0.55%. Bunds, gilts extended their advance amid haven buying, sending German 10-year yields to a two-month low.

Asian stocks erased an earlier loss on Thursday to trade slightly up, as traders continued to assess the potential impact of the omicron virus strain and the Federal Reserve’s efforts to keep inflation in check. 

Oil prices settled higher on Thursday, after a see-saw session that saw benchmarks swing after OPEC+ surprised markets by sticking to its plans to boost output slowly. Brent crude futures closed at $69.67 a barrel on Thursday, up 1.16%. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures stood at $66.50, up 1.42%.