(Apr 17): Global stock markets appear to have stabilised somewhat from the Covid-19 pandemic-induced freefall, from late February to the better part of March. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell more than 38% from its peak on Feb 12, ending the longest bull market in US history. Since the lows on March 23, however, the closely watched bellwether index has rebounded smartly and quickly, gaining 29%. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500 index charted a similar course.

The question on every investor’s mind must now be, “Have markets seen the worst, or is this a dead cat bounce boosted by short covering?”

The rebound was driven, in part, by encouraging statistics on a slowing in the number of new cases in some of the worst-hit countries such as Italy and the US state of New York — raising hopes that the pandemic is nearing its peak.

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