The Strategist

US investors fear that 2020 will repeat itself amid concerns over Omicron

12/21/2021 - 08:51

US stock and commodity markets suffered further losses due to investor fears over the spread of the omicron strain of the coronavirus. Stock indices fell, and so did oil prices and treasury bond yields. Analysts fear the economy and businesses may return to where they were months ago.

US investors fear a repeat of scenarios with covid lockdowns and restrictions due to the spread of the omicron coronavirus strain, which threatens the economic recovery. These fears rocked the US stock market on Monday, 20 December, writes The Washington Post.

"We've seen this story happen before on the healthcare front," said Wayne Wicker, director of investments at Mission Square Retirement. "Every time we seem to get an acceleration, a new event drops the market by at least 5%. It won't be possible to recover until some time later, when this variant disappears in terms of serious concerns," Wicker said. 

Uncertainty over the omicron variant of the coronavirus has overshadowed a period normally considered rosy for markets. "A Father Christmas rally may elude us this year after an impressive pre-Christmas rebound when the initial omicron shock passed," OANDA senior market analyst Craig Erlam said in comments emailed to the Washington Post. "Given the number of downside risks in the new year, it is not surprising that investors are taking a more cautious approach by getting out over the holidays," he added.