The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at a record high Monday, erasing the last of its pandemic losses, after a second drug company announced encouraging progress on developing a coronavirus vaccine. The Dow jumped 470.63 points, or 1.6%, to 29,950.44. It surpassed its prior closing record of 29,551.42, set in February before pandemic panic hit the market. The S&P 500 added to the record high it reached last Friday, rising 41.76, or 1.2%, to 3,626.91, the AP reports. The indexes rose after Moderna said its COVID-19 vaccine appears to be 94.5% effective, according to preliminary data. It comes just a week after Pfizer and BioNTech gave similarly encouraging numbers about their own vaccine candidate.
It's the second time this month that a company unveiled such encouraging numbers about a vaccine, boosting hopes that the global economy can return to some semblance of normal next year. Treasury yields, oil prices, and stocks around the world also rallied on the shot of increased optimism. A vaccine is precisely what markets have been waiting for to pull the global economy out of its cavern, and analysts say it’s a game changer. Leading the way again were stocks of companies that would benefit most from an economy busting out of its forced coma, such as airlines, movie theaters, and banks. At the same time, pandemic-winning stocks that benefited from lockdown orders like Amazon and Zoom Video Communications lagged as they no longer looked like the only safe bets to play.
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