cloudy.png
Friday September 17th, 2021 1:12PM

US stocks near records as vaccine hopes, virus fears collide

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stock indexes are drifting close to their record highs Wednesday, as hopes for a coronavirus vaccine coming in the future push some investors to look past the worsening pandemic in the present.

The S&P 500 was 0.2% higher in afternoon trading after Pfizer and BioNTech reported updated data suggesting their potential COVID-19 vaccine may be 95% effective. The companies said they plan to ask U.S. regulators within days to allow emergency use of the vaccine.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 51 points, or 0.2%, at 29,832, as of 12:19 p.m. Eastern time, and the Nasdaq composite was up 0.3%.

Despite the modest moves for indexes, rising optimism was apparent across the market. The majority of stocks in the S&P 500 and across Wall Street were rising. Companies that would benefit most from a healing, reopening economy were leading the way, such as airlines and banks. Both the S&P 500 and Dow were within half a percent of their record highs.

Earlier this week, Moderna also gave encouraging early data about a vaccine it’s separately developing. The improved prospects for a vaccine have some investors focusing on next year, when a vaccine or two could have the global economy operating closer to normal again.

That has investors embracing stocks that were beaten down by the weakened, closed economy of the pandemic. United Airlines gained 4.2% for one of the stronger gains in the S&P 500, and American Airlines climbed 3.4%.

“That story seems to be moderating a little bit here as the coronavirus news has now mostly been digested by the marketplace,” said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments. “The vaccine news immediately captures the imagination because you see an endpoint.”

Financial stocks, which stand to gain from a healing economy as workers get jobs and make good on their loans, were climbing 0.8% for the biggest gain among the 11 sectors that make up the S&P 500.

Optimism about the economy's prospects also has investors less enthusiastic about piling into the companies that dominated the stay-at-home economy of the pandemic, such as Big Tech. Apple rose 0.2% and Amazon ticked down by 0.2%.

Because these companies are so massive in size, their stock movements have an outsized effect on the S&P 500 and other indexes. Even though it was down just 0.2%, Microsoft was among the heaviest weights in the S&P 500 out of all the stocks within the index.

Of course, many risks still remain for the market. Chief among them is the pandemic, which is accelerating so quickly that governments across the United States and Europe are bringing back varying degrees of restrictions on businesses. Coronavirus counts and hospitalizations are up in states across the country, and health experts are warning about the possibility of a brutal winter.

Even with the encouraging figures from pharmaceutical companies about their potential vaccines, there’s also still no guarantee one will be approved or how long it will take for it to be widely distributed.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell on Tuesday warned of the potential economic damage in the next few months because of the pandemic. Additional lockdown orders would keep customers away from businesses. But even if the strictest stay-at-home orders don’t return, fear alone of the virus could keep consumers hunkered at home.

Powell and other economists have said another big financial-support program from Congress could help tide the economy over. But bitter partisanship in Washington has prevented any deal to renew extra unemployment benefits for laid-off workers and other stimulus efforts that expired earlier this year.

In Europe, a coronavirus relief package is being held up by a diplomatic dispute between Hungary and Poland and several other major EU countries.

In European stock markets, France’s CAC 40 rose 0.5%, and Germany’s DAX returned 0.5%. The FTSE 100 in London added 0.3%.

In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 1.1%, but other markets were stronger. South Korea’s Kospi added 0.3%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng climbed 0.5% and stocks in Shanghai added 0.2%.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury ticked up to 0.88% from 0.85% late Tuesday. A report showed that home builders broke ground on more new houses last month than economists expected.

___

AP Business Writer Joe McDonald contributed.

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, Top General short headlines, AP Business, AP Business - Economy, AP Business - Financial Markets, AP Business - Industries, AP Business - Health Care
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
US stocks near records as vaccine hopes, virus fears collide
U.S. stock indexes are drifting close to their record highs Wednesday, as hopes for a coronavirus vaccine coming in the future push some investors to look past the the worsening pandemic in the present
11:00AM ( 16 minutes ago )
Berlin police forcefully disperse protest over virus rules
German police fired water cannons at demonstrators protesting coronavirus restrictions after saying the crowd ignored warnings to wear masks and to keep their distance from one another
10:53AM ( 24 minutes ago )
US stock indexes drift as vaccine hopes, virus fears collide
U.S. stock indexes are drifting close to their record highs Wednesday, as hopes for a coronavirus vaccine coming in the future push some investors to look past the the worsening pandemic in the present
10:37AM ( 39 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
US stocks open higher after more encouraging vaccine news
Stocks are edging higher early Wednesday on Wall Street as traders welcome more upbeat news about a coronavirus vaccine candidate
9:45AM ( 1 hour ago )
Pfizer: COVID-19 shot 95% effective, seeking clearance soon
Pfizer says new test results show its coronavirus vaccine is 95% effective
9:40AM ( 1 hour ago )
Hungary sticks to veto of EU budget over rule-of-law issue
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban says the European Union’s proposed mechanism to link rule of law criteria to budget disbursements for EU nations is a “political and ideological weapon.”
9:38AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Business
Target gains steam heading into crucial holiday season
Target is the latest big U.S. discount retailer to show that it’s prospering during the pandemic
8:05AM ( 3 hours ago )
EU: Brexit trade talks still have 'substantial work' ahead
A top European Union official said Wednesday that trade talks with the United Kingdom still face “substantial work” that might well spill over into next week, with a perilous deadline drawing ever closer
7:48AM ( 3 hours ago )
Global stocks turn higher on more upbeat news about vaccines
Global stock markets are pushing higher after the release of more upbeat data about the coronavirus vaccine being developed by Pfizer and BioNTech
7:24AM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Business - Economy
Wall Street taps the brakes following its record-setting run
U.S. stocks are taking a pause on Tuesday from their big rally this month that vaulted them back to record heights
3:03PM ( 20 hours ago )
Global shares mixed as vaccine news lifts only some regions
Global shares are mixed as optimism that a vaccine may soon control the coronavirus buoyed only some regional indexes
4:28AM ( 1 day ago )
Some Asian shares buoyed by news on coronavirus vaccine
Asian shares are mixed, as some indexes lost earlier gains buoyed by optimism a vaccine may soon control the coronavirus and the economic destruction it’s caused
1:38AM ( 1 day ago )
AP Business - Financial Markets
The Latest: Pfizer seeks vaccine regulatory review in days
Pfizer announced more results in its ongoing coronavirus vaccine study that suggest the shots are 95% effective
7:45AM ( 3 hours ago )
Biden's DIY transition proceeds without Trump assistance
President-elect Joe Biden has been forced to seek extraordinary workarounds to prepare for the exploding public health threat and evolving national security challenges he will inherit in just nine weeks
6:45AM ( 4 hours ago )
The Latest: 6-day lockdown ordered in South Australia state
The Australian state of South Australia will begin a six-day lockdown at midnight Wednesday, with schools, universities, bars and cafes closed
10:55PM ( 12 hours ago )
AP Business - Industries
The Latest: Maryland restricts hours, capacity for business
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is imposing limits for operating hours and capacity of businesses amid a surge in coronavirus cases
6:16PM ( 17 hours ago )
The Latest: UK adds 598 COVID-19 deaths; reports over 52K
The British government says another 598 people across the U.K. have died after testing positive for the coronavirus, the highest daily figure since May
4:53PM ( 18 hours ago )
Volunteers still needed to test variety of COVID-19 vaccines
Two COVID-19 vaccines might be nearing the finish line, but scientists say it's critical that enough people volunteer to help finish studying other candidates
4:14PM ( 19 hours ago )
AP Business - Health Care
Berlin police forcefully disperse protest over virus rules
German police fired water cannons at demonstrators protesting coronavirus restrictions after saying the crowd ignored warnings to wear masks and to keep their distance from one another
10:53AM ( 24 minutes ago )
US stock indexes drift as vaccine hopes, virus fears collide
U.S. stock indexes are drifting close to their record highs Wednesday, as hopes for a coronavirus vaccine coming in the future push some investors to look past the the worsening pandemic in the present
10:37AM ( 40 minutes ago )
Cardi B, Dolly Parton, Dua Lipa to be honored by Billboard
Cardi B has only released one major single this year — the hit “WAP” — but it’s enough for Billboard to name her Woman of the Year
10:30AM ( 48 minutes ago )
Stocks drift as vaccine hopes collide with virus fears
U.S. stocks are drifting close to their record highs Wednesday, as hopes for a coronavirus vaccine coming in the future collide with worries about the worsening pandemic in the present
10:07AM ( 1 hour ago )
The Latest: Swiss soccer, hockey clubs can get federal funds
Professional soccer and hockey clubs in Switzerland can get federal funds to compensate for lost ticket sales if they cut salaries
10:06AM ( 1 hour ago )