Oil, stocks climb; Draghi remarks raise stimulus hopes

Thu Jan 21, 2016 2:19pm EST
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By Caroline Valetkevitch

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Oil prices and global equity markets rebounded on Thursday, following a turbulent few days that wiped trillions of dollars off asset values, though it was unclear whether the vigorous selling action had come to an end.

Remarks by European Central Bank President Mario Draghi earlier in the day raised hopes for further monetary stimulus and helped buoy the markets.

U.S. stocks were up in afternoon trading, led by gains in telecommunications, energy and consumer discretionary shares. European markets ended higher, while major Asian bourses finished lower.

The MSCI All Country World Index .MIWD00000PUS gained 0.68 percent to 359.74, a day after a drop pushed it beyond a 20-percent decline threshold that indicated it was in a bear market.

That index has shed 11 percent over the past 15 trading days, and volatility has spiked amid investor concern over weak growth and overvalued equity markets. Market participants had been looking for a notable selloff to suggest a massive dumping of positions had taken place, and Wednesday's dramatic action in the markets looked like it to some.

Europe's pan-regional FTSEurofirst 300 index .FTEU3 jumped 2.1 percent.

The euro fell to a two-week low against the dollar after the ECB's Draghi hinted of additional stimulus measures as early as March as economic risks had grown.

He cited concerns over China and emerging markets, volatility in financial and commodity markets and geopolitical risks, and said the tumult would prompt a March review of monetary policy. The euro EUR= fell below $1.08 for the first time in two weeks during his speech.   Continued...

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange January 20, 2016. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid