Healthcare stocks joined in a heady rebound as further intervention by U.S. and European governments seemed to give investors a long-awaited boost of confidence. Major indices solidly reversed course after an extended dive last week. The Dow Jones U.S. Healthcare Index finished the day up 12.12%, but leaving the index down 21.4% for the year to date. The rally lifted the Dow Jones industrial average 936.42 points or 11.08% and the Standard & Poors 500 104.13 points or 11.58% for the biggest single-day point gains ever. For the year to date, the Dow Jones industrial index is down 29.23%. The broader S&P 500 is down 31.67%.
The Federal Reserve and the central banks of England, Europe, Switzerland and Japan jointly unveiled plans to boost liquidity. Meanwhile, European governments announced further efforts to bolster faltering banks. We are showing today that we are willing to invest assets our country has to strengthen the banking system, said British Prime Minister Gordon Brown. But the most precious asset of all is something that if lost can only be restored not by words, but by actions, and that is the asset of trust and confidence. Confidence about the future is needed for confidence today. -- by Melanie Evans
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