By Yasin Ebrahim
Investing.com – Wall Street turned positive after clawing back losses on Monday as the Federal Reserve said it will buy individual corporate bonds just a month after it launched its corporate bond exchange-traded funds program.
In another effort to support the credit market, the Fed said it will buy, on the secondary market, individual bonds with remaining maturities of five years or less. The move will see the Fed’s balance sheet take on more exposure to corporate debt just a month after the central bank kicked off its bond exchange-traded funds (ETFs).
On May 12, the Fed began buying corporate bond ETFs under its the Secondary Market Corporate Credit Facility (SMCCF), to steady corporate debt markets following record outflows on concerns about companies defaulting on their debt.
The announcement comes as investors assessed an uptick in Covid-19 infections that threatened to slow the process of reopening the economy.
Reports of a jump in coronavirus cases across the U.S., China, and parts of Europe raised fears a second wave of the virus could be on the horizon that could potentially lead to fresh lockdowns.
Leaders in New York and Texas threatened to renew lockdowns.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Sunday that he would reimpose shutdowns if businesses failed to comply with current restrictions and people didn’t socially distance, according to Bloomberg.
Still, some on Wall Street continue to downplay the prospect of lasting damage on corporate earnings.
“But, the combination of incremental data improvement and extraordinary policy support has been sufficient to assure the forward-looking market that the earnings damage resulting from the virus will ultimately be short-lived,” Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) said in a note.
Travel and tourism, sectors sensitive to the pace of reopenings, pared some of their losses and helped the broader market bounce from session lows.
American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL) was down about 1%, Southwest Airlines (NYSE:LUV) was up 1%, while United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL) slipped 2% after the airline detailed plans to sell up to 28 million shares.
Elsewhere, Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) jumped 7% after on reports Israel was buying the company’s coronavirus vaccine.
Energy, meanwhile, also retracted losses as oil prices turned positive, shrugging off concerns about weakness in crude demand.
Wall Street Cuts Losses as Fed Expands Shopping List to Individual Corporate Debt
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