US stocks jump on Moderna vaccine progress

Democrats and Republicans in Washington are in the final two weeks of negotiations before the November 3 presidential election on new spending measures to boost the US economy after the coronavirus pandemic caused grievous damage earlier in the year.
Democrats and Republicans in Washington are in the final two weeks of negotiations before the November 3 presidential election on new spending measures to boost the US economy after the coronavirus pandemic caused grievous damage earlier in the year.
Bloomberg Creative

Wall Street stocks rose early Monday following upbeat news on a coronavirus vaccine and merger announcements in the banking and retail industries.

US biotech firm Moderna said its experimental vaccine against Covid-19 was almost 95% effective, a hopeful follow-up to a positive announcement last week by Pfizer on its own vaccine for the deadly virus.

The Moderna news helped offset worries about the rising coronavirus outbreak in the near-term, lifting major indices in anticipation of an economic recovery.

About 15 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.2% at 29 828.59.

The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.7% to 3 611.49, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.5% to 11 890.44.

Analysts said sentiment was further boosted by announcements that Spain's BBVA would sell its US unit to PNC Financial Services for $11.6 billion, and The Home Depot's plan to acquire wholesaler HD Supply Holdings for $8 billion.

Major economic releases this week include retail sales, housing starts for October and earnings from Walmart.

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