Pfizer and BionTech announced that a test vaccine stopped nine-tenths of new infections in a study involving thousands of volunteers. Photo: AFP

The global stock markets jumped, led by sectors depressed by the Covid-19 pandemic, after Pfizer and BionTech announced that a test vaccine stopped nine-tenths of new infections in a study involving thousands of volunteers.

Futures on the US S&P 500 Index jumped by 3.15% as of 8 pm Hong Kong time, while the main index of small-capitalization stocks, the Russell 2000, gained more than 7% in the futures market.

Contracts on the Russell 2000 Index of small-cap stocks surged 7%. The EuroStoxx Index rose more than 5%.

Pfizer and BioNtech executives said that the 90% prevention result was better than researchers had anticipated. An effectiveness of 60% to 70% had been expected, according Ugur Sahin, BioNTech’s cief executive officer. “More than 90% is extraordinary,” he said. “This is about the best the news could possibly be for the world and for the United States and for public health.”

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