U.S. stocks reached new all-time highs Monday, extending their record run from last week thanks to rallying tech shares and positive news on potential coronavirus treatments.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 1.4%, nearly 400 points, on Monday, while the S&P 500 rose 1% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite gained 0.6%.
The S&P 500 hit a fresh high, closing above 3,400 for the first time, while the Nasdaq also reached a new record.
The Trump administration is considering fast tracking a vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University for approval before the November election, the Financial Times reported.
The market rose as the number of new coronavirus cases in the United States continues to decline: On Sunday, the number of new daily infections fell to less than 37,000, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
The Food and Drug Administration on Sunday also issued an emergency use authorization of convalescent plasma for hospitalized coronavirus patients, a treatment which Trump has claimed cuts the mortality rate by 35%—although scientists are skeptical.
Adding to bullish sentiment was continued strength in Big Tech stocks, which helped push the market to record highs last week: Shares of Apple, Facebook and Microsoft all rose slightly.
Meanwhile, shares of companies that would benefit from a reopening of the economy—such as casinos and airlines—surged higher amid optimism for a coronavirus treatment.
“While the early use authorization for plasma is clearly a positive, from a market standpoint a vaccine remains a true ‘silver bullet’ that could super charge a rally,” says Tom Essaye, editor of the Sevens Report. “So, while positive, the plasma news is not a bullish game-changer,” although it does add to the fear of missing out in the market rally, he adds.
The market reached a milestone last week, with the S&P 500 surpassing its previous record high, set in February, for the first time last Tuesday. The index has now fully recovered its losses from the market sell off caused by the coronavirus pandemic, officially ending the 2020 bear market. On Friday, the S&P wrapped up its fourth straight positive week and closed at a fresh record high.
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