Dow, S&P 500 set intraday data as inventory market goals to increase year-end rally in 2021’s penultimate session

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U.S. stocks rose modestly on Thursday morning, with the S&P 500 index and the Dow stretching their march to new records up to the 2021 cap, as investor buying is at least partially driven by the belief that an omicron-fueled spread of COVID is not enough will do lasting damage to the economy.

Investors are watching the final economic reports for this calendar year, including a weekly US update on those claiming unemployment insurance benefits, which have been held at 52-year lows.

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How are stock benchmarks performing?
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, + 0.08%, rose 81 points, or 0.2%, to 36,571 after breaking an intraday high of 36,679.44 at the start of the session.

  • The S&P 500 Index SPX, + 0.15%, traded 14 points or 0.3% higher at 4,807 after breaking its intraday record Thursday morning at 4,808.38.

  • The Nasdaq Composite Index COMP gained +0.48% by 85 points to reach 15,851 points, an increase of 0.5%.

On Wednesday, the Dow rose 90.42 points, or 0.3%, to hit a record high of 36,488.63, marking its 45th record high in 2021; the S&P 500 gained 6.71 points, or 0.1%, to close on a record 4,793.06 for its 70th record close in 2021. However, the Nasdaq Composite lost 15.51 points, or 0.1%, to close at 15,766. 22nd

The week, the month and the year

For the week, the Dow is heading for a 1.5% gain, the S&P 500 expects a 1.4% gain and the Nasdaq Composite expects a 0.7% gain over the period. For the month and year, the Dow was on track, up 5.8% in December and up 19.2% in 2021, with the S&P 500 forecasting a 5% increase and a gain of 28 for the month to date .4% so far this year. while the Nasdaq Composite is up 1.5% m / m and up 22.5% in 2021.

What is driving the market?

The US stock benchmarks climbed to new records, with a report showing that labor shortages and labor demand are currently overshadowing concerns about Omicron.

US Department of Labor data shows that 198,000 filed for unemployment benefits in the week ending December 25, bringing new jobless claims to a 52-year low amid the proliferation of Omicron.

Initial jobless claims fell slightly, from a revised 206,000 two weeks ago based on new government data. Economists polled by the Wall Street Journal had forecast new claims of 205,000 seasonally adjusted.

“The bottom line is that the claims data are just back where they were in January 2020. Not the hiring page, of course, but we know all of the factors there, especially the few million who have retired early, ”wrote Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer of the Bleakley Advisory Group, in a Thursday release.

Coupled with unemployment claims over the past few weeks, evidence suggests that the Omicron variant of COVID, with preliminary data showing it causes milder symptoms than previous strains of coronavirus, has not yet impacted key areas of the economy.

The number of Americans now hospitalized with COVID-19 is around 60,000, or about half the number in January, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported, although new daily cases hit a record high.

The number of hospital admissions is unlikely to ever hit its previous high, Amesh Adalja, senior scientist at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security at Bloomberg School Public Health, told the Associated Press. Vaccines and treatments developed since last year have made it easier to contain the spread of the virus and minimize its serious effects in people with breakthrough infections.

“It will take time for people to agree that cases are no longer as important as they were in the past,” said Adalja. “We have a lot of defense against it.” But even if fewer people are being hospitalized compared to previous increases, the virus can ravage hospitals and healthcare workers, he added.

In addition, Johnson & Johnson JNJ, + 0.52%, said Thursday that a South African phase 3 study showed that booster vaccination of its vaccine was 85% effective in preventing hospitalization related to COVID-19 .

Unemployment figures aside, the Chicago Business Barometer, also known as the Chicago PMI, rose to 63.1 in December from 61.8 in the previous month. Economists polled by the Wall Street Journal had forecast a value of 62. Any value over 50 indicates growth, and numbers over 60 are considered exceptional.

In residential construction, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.11% for the week ended December 30, Freddie Mac FMC reported Thursday. That is six basis points more than in the previous week and averaging 2.67% at this point last year.

Due to the New Year holiday, there will be no dates on Friday.

Which companies are in focus?
  • Shares in Tesla Inc. TSLA fell, setting it on track for a third straight decline when the electric vehicle maker announced a voluntary safety recall of 356,309 Model 3 vehicles, citing potential issues with rearview cameras.

  • Shares in Biogenic
    BIIB, -7.25% were in focus after Korea-based Samsung Biologics
    207940, +1.46% called a media report that the company should be bought “not true”. Biogen shares were down 5%.

  • US listed stocks of Didi Global
    DIDI, + 5.50%, moved to a lower pre-market after the amusement ride company announced its third-quarter sales fell. Didi’s shares rose 1.2%.

  • Shares in Royal Caribbean group RCL rose 1.6% in morning trading Thursday after the cruise operator tried to downplay the impact of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus on cruises.

  • Shares in Kroger Co. KR rose 1% on Thursday, setting them on track for a fourth straight profit after the supermarket operator announced a new $ 1 billion share buyback program.

How are other assets?
  • The 10-year TMUBMUSD10Y government bond yield was 1.53%, down 1 basis point, but still at its highest level since Nov. 24, according to Dow Jones Market Data. Returns on debt rise when prices fall.

  • The ICE US Dollar Index DXY, a measure of the currency against a basket of six major rivals, rose 0.1%.

  • Oil futures fell, with the US benchmark CL00 trading 0.4% to $ 76.17 a barrel. Gold futures GC00 for February GCG22 delivery fell 0.1% to $ 1,803.20 an ounce.

  • Bitcoin BTCUSD was unchanged at around $ 47,195.

  • The Stoxx Europe 600 Index SXXP was down 0.3% while the London markets rose less than 0.1%.

  • In Asian trading, the Shanghai Composite SHCOMP closed 0.6% higher, while the Hang Seng Index HSI climbed 0.1%. The Japanese Nikkei 225 NIK closed 0.4% lower and the Chinese CSI 300,000300 rose 0.8%.

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