Stocks rose on Wall Street on Monday, building on last week’s strong performance, as investors looked past continued coronavirus cases increases over the weekend.
While COVID-19 cases are increasing, as would be logically expected as testing increases, the good news is that COVID-19 appears to be dropping in intensity and herd immunity looks to be developing:
Florida reports a record 15k cases on massive day of testing
Positivity drops to 11 percent pic.twitter.com/1rlYJ1JmdJ
— Evan Axelbank Fox13 (@EvanAxelbank) July 12, 2020
No question new cases >15k are bad in Florida. But it’s noteworthy that that figure came after 137k tests. In fact, test positivity is down for the 3rd straight day. And daily deaths (45) are still below states like NJ. Hospitalizations aren’t really pushing capacity either. Odd. pic.twitter.com/Jiu2f2kljR
— Ray Hennessey (@Hennesseyedit) July 12, 2020
The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 350 points, or 1.3%. The S&P 500 gained 1.1% and the Nasdaq Composite advanced 1.4%. The Nasdaq-100 — which is made up of the 100-largest nonfinancial companies in the composite — surged 1.6% to break above 11,000 for the first time.
The U.S. has reported more than 60,000 new [COVID-19] cases daily for three days in a row now, bringing the national total to more than 3 million cases, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.
“COVID remains a huge problem w/cases, hospitalizations, and fatalities all climbing,” Vital Knowledge founder Adam Crisafulli said in a note on Sunday. “The market continues to absorb all this information relatively well and this seems to be a function of vaccine hopes, lower fatality rates vs. Mar/April, the avoidance of wholesale lockdowns, and the lack of a resurgence in the Northeast (esp. NYC).”
Positive news on the vaccine front lifted sentiment as well. Pfizer and German biotech BioNTech SE were granted fast track designation by the FDA for two of the companies’ four vaccine candidates against the coronavirus. Pfizer shares added 2.6%. BioNTech jumped 10%.
Pfizer and BioNTech said they expect to start the next phase of the vaccine trial later this month with 30,000 subjects. The companies expect to have 100 million doses of a vaccine by the end of 2020 and more than 1.2 billion doses by the end of 2021, according to a release.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq outperformed, climbing 10.7% this month as Amazon, Apple, Netflix, Alphabet all reclaimed new highs.
MacDailyNews Take: Shares of Apple flirted with $400 as the price hit a new all-time intraday high of $399.47 today.