State Street Global MarketsInvestor Confidence Index of 108.0 is up 5.4 points from February’s revised reading of 102.6.

State Street said the driving force this month was provided by Asian institutional investors, whose confidence rose 4.1 points to 100.8 from February’s revised reading of 96.7; elsewhere, the changes were more muted.

“This month saw a solid increase in investor confidence, with Asian institutional investors leading the way,” said Harvard University Professor Ken Froote, who jointly developed the index with SSGA. “As we anticipated, the increase in the discount rate by the U.S. Federal Reserve in February seems to have been largely priced-in by institutions. Now that concerns about the European periphery have been assuaged somewhat, investors are focused on the continuing improvement in the macroeconomic outlook, and what it implies for equity valuations.”

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