Ben Bernanke Makes the Stock Market Happy, a Day Late

By
Photo: Getty Images

When the Federal Reserve chair announced $600 billion in new spending to break a spiral into deflation, it was assumed that the markets had been expecting the move and priced it in, so the Dow went up less than 30 points on a day when one chunk of economic uncertainty was removed. Uh-oh.

On Thursday, a delayed reaction kicked in, and the Dow rose over 200 points, bringing it back, finally, to 2008 levels. Analysts said that the extra surge of money meant there was more room for investment, for risk. America's not the only place with a sunnier outlook:


By midday in Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 index rallied 2.9 percent. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong rose 1.3 percent, while stocks in Shanghai were up 1.3 percent. Commodities like oil, gold and copper were all trading sharply higher.

If the early good results continue, watch for a lot of grumbling and looking back by former Democratic congressmen, asking, "Why didn't Bernanke do this earlier?"

Markets in Asia surge after the Fed's move [NYT]