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May 15, 2020 6:00 PM, EDT

Stocks Rise With Weak Data Set Aside; Oil Jumps

A businessman is reflected on an electronic stock board in Tokyo, Japan.A businessman is reflected on an electronic stock board in Tokyo, Japan. (Yuriko Nakao/Bloomberg News)

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U.S. stocks rose as traders looked past trade jitters and weak economic data. Treasuries fell. Oil jumped.

The S&P 500 erased losses, but still posted its worst week since March 20 — just before the gauge started a torrid rally. Sorrento Therapeutics jumped as much as 244% amid coronavirus antibody development claims. J.C. Penney soared after saying it made an almost $17 million interest payment due May 7. Earlier May 15, stocks slumped as retail sales and factory output registered their steepest declines on record. Meanwhile, the U.S. moved to curtail Huawei Technologies’ chip supply, spurring a rout in semiconductor companies.

Despite the stock rebound, mounting tension between the world’s largest economies has investors concerned of an even deeper global recession. The cost of the coronavirus pandemic could reach as much as $8.8 trillion, according to the Asian Development Bank. President Donald Trump officially introduced a former pharmaceutical executive and a four star-general who will lead his crash coronavirus vaccine effort, amid a whistle-blower’s criticism that the administration lacked a plan to combat the outbreak.

“It’s a sobering week,” said Tracie McMillion, head of global asset allocation strategy at Wells Fargo Investment Institute. “Investors have a lot to think about with regard to China. We got data this week that accentuate the difficulty the economy is experiencing right now.”

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