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Dow rises greater than 200 points, hits record very high as Wall Street kicks off last week of 2020

 Stocks traded higher on Monday in front of the final trading week of 2020 and as President Donald Trump unexpectedly signed an economic help bill.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 207 points, or 0.7 %. The S&P 500 climbed 0.7 %, and the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.6 %. All 3 major indexes hit record highs at the open.

President Donald Trump signed a $900 billion Covid-19 relief bill into law, averting a government shutdown and extending unemployment benefits to millions of Americans. The signing came many days after Trump suggested he would veto the legislation, demanding $2,000 immediate payments to Americans, rather than $600.

All the bluster neither considerably changed to outlook for stocks, as markets still expected (and ultimately received) stimulus of a minimum of $900 billion to pass, wrote Tom Essaye, founder of The Sevens Report.

The five pillars of the rally (Federal stimulus, FOMC stimulus, vaccine rollout, divided government and no double dip recession) re main mainly in place, and until that changes, the medium and longer term outlook for stocks will be positive, Essaye included.

Apple led the Dow higher, rising 2.5 %. Tech and materials had been the best performing sectors in the S&P 500, gaining 0.9 % along with 0.8 %, respectively.

Wall Street is actually coming off a peaceful holiday week in which the key averages had been level. The S&P 500 fell 0.2 % last week as some investors got the chips off to the year end. The 30 stock Dow eked out a 0.1 % gain for the same period.

Profit-taking might ramp up in the very last week of the season, which has thus far seen surprisingly strong returns. The S&P 500 has acquired 15.4 % year to date, while the Dow has climbed 6.4 %. The Nasdaq has soared 43.2 % this season as investors favored high-growth technology names while in the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

Dr. Anthony Fauci warned on Sunday that the nation can see a surge in new Covid 19 infections after Christmas and New Year’s celebrations. 2 vaccines by Moderna and Pfizer have started the distribution process this month. So far more than one million men and women in the U.S. have been vaccinated.

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