What a difference half a day makes.

The S&P 500 index and the Dow Jones Industrial Average were on the verge of finishing lower for the first time in five sessions, weighed by a confluence of negative headlines, but managed a turnaround for the record books.

Afghanistan fell to insurgent Taliban forces, data out of China indicated that the spread of the highly transmissible delta variant of COVID-19 was slowing down the world’s second-largest economy.

On top of that, some Federal Reserve officials were seen leaning toward ending the central bank’s monthly purchases of $120 billion in Treasurys and mortgage-backed securities by the middle of 2022, concluding some of the COVID-era accommodation that had helped to support financial markets during the height of the pandemic-inspired disruptions in the early spring of 2021, and setting the stage for raising interest rates.

Monday’s early bearish narratives were enough to test the conviction of the staunchest bulls, but greed appeared to be outpacing fear on Wall Street, helping to cement a notable comeback.

The S&P 500

was down 0.7% at Monday’s low but ended with a gain of 0.3% on Monday, representing the biggest comeback for the broad-market index since March 25, according to Dow Jones Market Data. The index also closed at a record for the fifth straight session.

The Dow
meanwhile, also logged a fifth straight record closing high, matching the longest such run of all-time highs ended Nov. 8, 2017. The last time the DJIA and S&P 500 set five consecutive closing records together was a five-day stretch that ended Oct. 20, 2017.

The Nasdaq Composite Index

also pared its decline but still ended the session in negative territory.

To be sure, stock market investors don’t think investors are out of the woods.

Joe LaVorgna, chief economist of the Americas at Natixis said that evidence that confidence is flagging is a bad sign for the economy and markets.

“Recent weakness in consumer sentiment is cause for some concern because it likely signals slower consumption growth going forward,” he wrote in a Monday research note. Morgan Stanley strategist Michael Wilson also cautioned that the market remains vulnerable to a correction at some point, with a price target for the S&P 500 at 4,000 and 4,225 by the middle of 2022.

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