- ASX SPI 200 futures up 1.5% to 6,795.00
- Dow Average up 2.7% to 30,273.18
- Aussie down 0.3% to 0.6499 per US$
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Stocks extended their rebound from deeply oversold levels, with traders weighing whether it would be realistic that central banks moderate their aggressive stance to prevent a hard landing.
The S&P 500 had its best two-day surge since April 2020. Tesla Inc. climbed even after Elon Musk revived his $44 billion bid for Twitter Inc., which soared 22%. On top of the equity short squeeze, soft economic data gave bulls a glimmer of hope when it comes to policy. US job openings sank to a 14-month low — which may fit well with a Federal Reserve that’s worried about a hot labor market. The dollar slumped.
Defy fear — and gravity — by building the highest-possible human towers.
That was the goal of thousands of people who gathered in a stadium in northeastern Spain, climbing on top of each other to perilous heights in a competition for the tallest formation.
The human towers are called “castells” and building them is a centuries-old practice in Catalonia, an autonomous community within Spain with a strong identity and language.
An “integral part” of the Catalan people’s “cultural identity,” according to UNESCO, the tradition is believed to have originated from human towers built at the end of the 18th century by dance groups.
In the city of Tarragona, some 60 miles south of Barcelona, 11,000 spectators filled a stadium to watch 41 teams of “castellers” compete, the first time the biannual event was held since 2018, due to the pandemic.
The winning team, Vilafranca, secured the €16,000 ($15,715) prize — as well as local acclaim — with a human tower that reached nearly 43 feet. Its “castellers” dismounted safely, earning them extra points, Reuters reported.
That’s not to say the performance was without drama: Photos show the Vilafranca “castellers” falling in one of the rounds. Competition organizers told journalists that throughout the event, 71 people were treated for injuries and 13 were transported to a hospital.
The greens, as the team is known for the teal color of their shirts, are the reigning champions of Tarragona: They won the competition every time between 2002 and 2016, according to local outlet Corporacio Catalana de Media Audiovisual.
In a tweet on Sunday, Vilafranca thanked “the best fans in the world” and said “Today Tarragona is greener than ever!”
For Catalan people, “castells” are an important cultural tradition, passed down between generations “and providing community members a sense of continuity, social cohesion and solidarity,” UNESCO said in 2010, the same year it listed the practice as part of a list of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
When building “castells,” people coalesce around a base in a support formation known as the “pinya.” Above the base, “castellers” stand on each other’s shoulders to form between six and ten levels.
The tower in the middle is called a “tronc,” and is typically made up of broad-shouldered men who serve as the anchors while lighter adults, and then children, make up the upper rings.
At the end, one child, the “enxaneta,” ascends to the very top of the tower, above the last three levels known as the “pom de dalt.”
Sunday’s competition was an upbeat event that attracted crowds from around Catalonia and the world.