The race to deliver the jab to the world’s populations has so far been led by a handful of smaller nations, and now they’re outpacing some of the wealthiest countries in the eyes of traders too.
The fastest Covid-19 vaccination rollouts globally, in Israel and the United Arab Emirates, are propelling their stocks to some of the world’s top gains. Israel’s benchmark index has advanced 7.6% this year, outperforming both the S&P 500 and the Euro Stoxx Index. It ranks 12th among major equity gauges. Meantime, the Dubai Financial Market General Index has climbed 9%, all but reversing its 10% slump in 2020 and handing investors the sixth-best returns year to date. The Abu Dhabi Securities Market General Index is the world’s third-best performer.
Traders are rushing to price the global vaccine rollout and betting nations at the forefront will be the fastest to recover from the crisis, lifting their stocks, currencies and bond yields. The share of a country’s population that has been inoculated might be “the most important statistic to track over the next year,” according to strategists at JPMorgan Chase & Co.