A stock investor’s mantra so far this year: Panic and sell. Realize it isn’t that bad and buy. Repeat.
After a punishing day for global markets on Thursday, driven in part by news that Apple was reducing its revenue expectations for the first time in 16 years, stocks climbed. The S&P 500 rose more than 1.5 percent at the start of trading on Wall Street Friday after similar gains in Europe and parts of Asia.
One notable exception among global markets was Japan, where shares fell in the first trading day of the new year.
Stock investors have been looking for fresh evidence about the state of the economy, and on Friday they got a sign that it remains in good health. Employers in the United States added 312,000 jobs last month, well above Wall Street’s expectations and the biggest monthly gain since February.
The faint prospect that China and the United States were inching toward a resolution of their trade war also helped lift markets. China’s Commerce Ministry said on Friday that Jeffrey Gerrish, the deputy United States trade representative, would lead a delegation to Beijing for trade talks next week.
One of the biggest concerns for investors is how much the trade dispute between China and the United States will dent global growth. The meeting next week would be the first between the two sides since President Trump and President Xi Jinping called a 90-day truce in December.
China also took steps to bolster its economy on Friday. The People’s Bank of China said it would cut the amount of cash that banks have to hold as reserves against bad times, essentially freeing up about $218 billion.
Reflecting Friday’s optimistic tone, crude oil prices rose and shares of energy companies were among the best performers on the S&P 500. The American benchmark for oil prices climbed above $48 a barrel.
The wealth management units of several global banks began circulating notes encouraging clients not to panic and highlighting “silver linings” and buying opportunities amid a rout that dragged markets around the world into negative territory last year.
“There are plenty of looming concerns for investors, from the U.S. government shutdown and vexed trade talks with China, to the potential impact on consumer and business confidence from the recent market volatility,” analysts at the Swiss bank UBS wrote in a note.
“However,” the note continued, “we think markets can rebound and hold an overweight to global stocks.”
[Read more about all the economic concerns that sent stocks tumbling on Thursday.]
In Europe, London’s FTSE 100 was up more than 1.5 percent by the afternoon. The CAC 40 in France also had risen almost 1.7 percent, and the Dax in Germany was about 2 percent higher.
In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 2.2 percent on Friday. In China, the Shanghai Composite Index gained 2.1 percent. The Shenzhen Composite Index closed 2.7 percent higher.
South Korea’s Kospi index gained 0.8 percent. Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 2.3 percent. Taiwan’s Taiex index fell 1.2 percent.