Dow Has Best Day in Nearly a Century

MANHATTAN (CN) — A rally from investors reversed Monday’s stock losses and ushered in the best day of trading since 1933 even before the Senate reached a deal on a $2 trillion stimulus package.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all gained more than 5% in the opening seconds of Tuesday’s market and steadily increased throughout the day.

President Donald Trump speaks about the coronavirus in the James Brady Briefing Room. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

Up more than 11% on the day, the Dow closed at 20,685 points. The market is now about 500 points higher than its closing on March 16, which had been its lowest drop since the 1987 market crash.

The S&P 500 settled at a 9% increase for the day, while the Nasdaq closed with an 8% increase.

Despite the day’s good financial news, President Donald Trump has grown increasingly frustrated, hinting that he may soon ease restrictions that have shut down businesses and kept people at home to slow down virus transmissions.

Trump said during a virtual town hall Tuesday that he wanted the nation’s economy to open back up in less than three weeks. “I would love to have the country opened up and raring to go by Easter,” the president said.

The federal government’s current recommendation of 15 days of social distancing would end March 30.

All eyes now on a third stimulus package, which the White House initially hoped would be passed Monday. Work on the massive $1.8 trillion package stalled when Democrats balked over $500 billion set aside for “distressed businesses,” calling the money a “slush fund” without much oversight.

President Trump waved away such concerns during a Monday press conference, claiming, “I will be the oversight, I will be the oversight.”

Lawmakers had hoped to have finished negotiations on the bill finished Tuesday morning, but work continued past closing bell on Tuesday.

A vote on the package could come this evening if the measure passes the Senate.

Despite no stimulus, investors have been optimistic Tuesday, with futures signaling a strong opening as the Dow, S&P and Nasdaq all hit their 5% “limit-up” thresholds at various points.

Markets abroad also served as predictors of the Tuesday’s rally. Asian markets rebounded despite news that Japan would postpone the summer Olympics in Tokyo until 2021 and predictions that China’s gross domestic product would plummet 11% during 2020’s first quarter.

European stocks also defied expectations, despite a boom in coronavirus-related deaths over the weekend and news that the United Kingdom would impose a three-week nationwide lockdown.

The Stoxx 600 closed 8.4% up, with Germany’s DAX rallying nearly 11% and the U.K.’s Financial Times Stock Exchange hitting a 9% increase on the day’s trading.

The good news on Wall Street was a stark contrast to increasingly negative reports regarding the spread of the coronavirus.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said confirmed cases of the virus have doubled every three days in his state. “We haven’t flattened the curve, and the curve is actually increasing,” Cuomo said Tuesday.

Deaths in Italy spiked over the last two days, and the country now leads in terms of total deaths from coronavirus at more than 6,800.

Cases of Covid-19, the new strain of coronavirus, have more than doubled in the last week, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. On March 17 only about 196,000 confirmed cases, while more than 407,000 are now affected.

The United States has fared much worse in that period. On March 17, only 5,700 confirmed cases nationally. Currently there are about 50,000 confirmed cases in the United States.

Data show more than 18,000 have died globally from the virus, with nearly 600 deaths in the United States.

%d bloggers like this: