Dow, S&P 500, Nasdaq end at records, extending rally

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Wall Street stocks powered to fresh records on Monday, extending last week’s surge on optimism that additional US fiscal stimulus is coming soon and an expected economic recovery.

All three major indices ended at all-time highs, with the Dow Jones gaining 0.8 percent to finish the session at 31,385.

The S&P 500 advanced 0.7 percent to close at 3,915, while the Nasdaq jumped 1.0 percent to 13,987.

Investors are betting that President Joe Biden will succeed in winning approval for most of aspects of his US$1.9 trillion fiscal relief package, analysts said.

Over the weekend, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen predicted the United States would get back to full employment next year if the package is enacted, but warned job gains would lag if Congress does not come through.

Investors also have been cheered by progress on coronavirus vaccines, with Johnson & Johnson last week filing for emergency authorisation of its Covid-19 vaccine with US health authorities.

Markets are eyeing improving corporate earnings following generally strong fourth-quarter results thus far. About 80 percent of S&P 500 companies that have reported have topped expectations for profits and revenue, according to Factset.

This week’s calendar includes earnings reports from General Motors and Disney in addition to the latest consumer price index data.

Petroleum-linked shares were especially strong on Monday with the recent bounce in oil prices. Chevron jumped 2.5 percent, Apache 10 percent and Halliburton 5.6 percent. (AFP)