Wall Street closed out a tumultuous year for stocks with more record highs Thursday, a fitting coda to the market’s stunning comeback from its historic plunge in the early weeks of the coronavirus pandemic.
Stocks have been mostly grinding higher in recent weeks, with indexes setting new highs, amid optimism that coronavirus vaccinations will pave the way in coming months for the economy to escape from the pandemic’s grip.
Among the companies losing ground Tuesday was Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group Inc., which fell 2.6% after the shopping mall operator completed its $3 billion purchase of an 80% stake in rival Taubman Centers.
U.S. investors cheered the U.S. aid package, restoring some of the optimism that drove global stocks to a record this month even as the pandemic escalated.
In a mixed and muted day of trading, the S&P 500 rose 6.55 points, or 0.2%, to 3,701.17. It’s within roughly 1 point of its record set last week.
Wall Street is growing increasingly confident that Democratic and Republican lawmakers will clinch a bill based on a $748 billion bipartisan proposal that would inject cash directly into the economy as prior benefits begin to expire at the end of the year.
The stock market tumbled through years’ worth of losses in just over a month this spring, only to turn around and pack an entire bull market’s worth of gains into less than nine months.
All major indexes for U.S. equities—the S&P 500, the Dow Jones industrial average, the Russell 2000 and the Nasdaq composite—closed at records. Such synchronized highs were last seen in January 2018.
The proposal filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday, if approved, would require all companies listed on the exchange to publicly disclose consistent, transparent diversity statistics about their board of directors.
The turbocharger for the market’s move higher has been a huge dose of hope as pharmaceutical companies come closer to delivering vaccines to a world beaten down by the COVID-19 pandemic.
New York City-based S&P Global announced that it would acquire IHS Markit, based in London, in an all-stock deal.
Trading volumes have been elevated in what is normally a calm week. More than 12 billion shares changed hands on Monday, up 75% from the Monday before last year’s holiday.
The Dow Jones industrial average surpassed its record of 29,551.42 set in February before pandemic panic hit the market.
Initial Public Offering advisers are expecting to see a record amount of listing activity during the period between the U.S. Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.
Global markets roared Monday, with the Dow Jones industrial average soaring to intraday highs not seen since February.
Markets were already sharply higher on the U.S. election result when Pfizer said that research shows vaccine shots may be 90% effective at preventing COVID-19, indicating the company is on track this month to file an emergency-use application with U.S. regulators.
The S&P 500 rose 1.9%, its fourth straight gain of more than 1%, and is now up 7.4% for the week. That would be its best week since the market was exploding out of the crater created in February and March by panic about the coronavirus pandemic.
Analysts said the gains came as markets saw the upside of political control in Washington, D.C., remaining split between Democrats and Republicans.
The three major U.S. indexes closed out the final trading day of a turbulent October with more losses, capping a wretched week marked by a record surge in coronavirus infections, dashed hopes for an economic rescue deal before the election and renewed fears of a new wave of business disruptions.