US Stocks Mixed in Early Going

US Stocks Mixed in Early Going

The three major USA stock indexes had fallen on Thursday as more than a dozen US states reported a doubling of new COVID-19 cases in the last two weeks, with Chicago's mayor issuing a month-long stay-at-home advisory.

The blue-chip Dow dropped 0.6 per cent as industrial and financial companies sensitive to economic growth fell, with Boeing Co and Goldman Sachs down about two per cent each.

Quoting statistics, on Thursday's Wall St. wind down, trade-sensitive Dow plunged 1.24 per cent to 29,031.8 and benchmark S&P 500 lost 1.15 per cent to 3,531.44, while tech-heavy Nasdaq was nudged 0.65 per cent lower to round off the day at 11,709.71.

The S&P 500 and the Dow fell today as United States coronavirus infections surged and investors weighed the timeline of the mass roll-out of an effective vaccine.

On top of that, a spike in the pandemic cases ahead of the wintry chills had also weighed heavily on investors' sentiments, while the U.S. state of NY had become the latest to join a string of USA states to introduce a broader social distancing rule yesterday.

Wells Fargo analysts said "vaccine optimism is being overshadowed by concerns that renewed restrictions could hinder ongoing economic recovery".

The travel and pleasure industry was further jostled with airlines and cruise operators, among the hardest hit by the pandemic. Stocks have also benefited from expectations that a divided Congress will thwart tax hikes that would hurt corporate profits.

Walt Disney Co and networking gear maker Cisco Systems Inc slipped ahead of their quarterly results due after markets close.

Nasdaq 100 E-minis were up 0.16%.

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Globalt's Martin also pointed to investor hopes for news of more coronavirus vaccine progress soon, after Moderna Inc said earlier this week that it had enough data for a first interim analysis of its late-stage trial.

"It's the classic between the market discounting something that is nine to 12 months out, and then "undiscounting" it because it has not happened yet".

On the data front, the U.S. Labor Department reported initial weekly jobless claims fell last week to 709,000 from 757,000 in the prior week.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a 2.84-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 2.12-to-1 ratio favored decliners.

The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note was little-changed at 0.895% on Friday.

The Nasdaq composite, meanwhile, was leading the market with a gain of 2%.

The pan-European STOXX 600 index rose 0.01% and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe gained 0.83%. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan closed 0.09% higher, while Japan's Nikkei rose 0.68%.

Oil prices jumped 80 cents to $42.05 US a barrel.

The dollar index fell 0.06%, with the euro up 0.25% to $1.1807.

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