US stocks moved lower on Friday, driven down by concerns over the coronavirus that has spread throughout China. The second confirmed case in the United States was confirmed on Friday. The VIX volatility index perked up surging near 13% on Friday. Gold prices moved higher, as investors poured money into safe-haven assets. US yields moved lower and the dollar gained traction which continued to put downward pressure on oil prices. Most sectors in the S&P 500 index were lower on Friday led by energy shares which continue to be weighed on by falling natural gas and oil prices. Utilities bucked the trend in a weak tape. Boeing shares received a lift as the FAS told airlines that it could lift a flight ban on the Boeing 737 Max begin the middle of the year.
Boeing Shares Rally
Boeing shares rallied for a second consecutive trading session as the head of the Federal Aviation Administration has told airlines that it could lift a flight ban on the Boeing 737 Max before the middle of the year which was Boeing’s new timeline that it shared with its customers this week. The planes have been grounded since March after two deadly crashes in a span of five months killed all 346 people on the flights.
Coronavirus Spreads Fear
The markets were on edge as the coronavirus continued to spread throughout China. The SARS crisis saw Chinese GDP fall by around two percentage points. While its hard to tell how this epidemic will affect the Chinese and therefore the global economy, the increase in travel restriction around the Lunar new year will likely weigh on economic growth. After Chinese returns from the Lunar New Year, it will report the official PMI. The contagion is expected to hit services harder than manufacturing.
This article was originally posted on FX Empire
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