Benchmarks closed higher on Wednesday fueled by a rally in technology shares amid positive coronavirus vaccine trail news. Additionally, investors remain hopeful that the Federal Reserve’s Chairman will keep rates unchanged in Thursday’s speech.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) rose 83.48 points, or 0.3%, to close at 28,331.92 and the S&P 500 edged up 35.11 points, or 1% to close at 3,478.73. The Nasdaq Composite Index closed at 11,665.06, adding 198.59 points, or 1.7%. The fear-gauge CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) increased 5.6%, to close at 23.27. Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones for 1.29-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 1.34-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq favored decliners.
How Did the Benchmarks Perform?
On Wednesday, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq closed at all-time highs. In fact, the broader index marked its 18th record close in 2020 and continued its fourth straight record closing high. Of the 11 major sectors of the S&P 500, six ended in the positive. Communication services and technology sectors emerged as the biggest gainers closing 3.7% and 2.1% higher for the session, respectively.
The tech-laden Nasdaq marked its 39th all-time closing this year. Rally in large-cap tech and e-commerce stocks like Netflix, Inc. NFLX, Facebook, Inc. FB, Tesla, Inc. TSLA and Amazon.com, Inc. AMZN pushed the index higher. The stocks closed 11.6%, 8.2%, 6.4% and 2.9% higher, respectively, for the day.
Facebook carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
The blue-chip Dow which stands 4.1% below its 12th record closing high in February 2020 was lifted by giants like Microsoft Corporation MSFT, The Home Depot, Inc. HD, The Walt Disney Company DIS and Apple Inc. AAPL that gained at least 1.4% on Wednesday.
Overall, the S&P 500 posted 38 new 52-week highs and no new lows, while the Nasdaq Composite recorded 88 new highs and 8 new lows.
All Eye on Jackson Hole
Wednesday’s market rally comes ahead of a potentially market-moving speech from Federal Reserve’s Chairman Jerome Powell on Thursday. Powell is expected to deliver a webcast address to the annual Jackson Hole gathering of central banks Aug 27 morning and outline changes to the Fed’s policy framework. The speech will give clues on further stimulus and investors will be looking specifically for Powell’s comments on inflation.
Fed’s further monetary stimulus plays a wide role in market rally as the White House and Democrats remain deadlocked on a new coronavirus aid package.
Coronavirus Vaccine Trial - Encouraging
On Wednesday, Moderna, Inc. MRNA reported that its coronavirus vaccine trail showed promising results in patients aged 56 and older. The vaccine was tested on 10 adults between the ages of 56 and 70 and 10 elderly adults aged 71 and older.
Each of the patients received two 100 microgram doses of Moderna’s vaccine 28 days apart. This early stage clinical trial has produced neutralizing antibodies in volunteers, which researchers believe are necessary to build immunity to the coronavirus, and T-cells.
Salesforce Registers Stellar Earnings
Scheduled to join the DOW by the end of this month, shares of salesforce.com inc. CRM was already climbing high, but the stocks surged 26% on Wednesday after reporting better-than-expected second-quarter fiscal 2021 earnings after the bell on Aug 25. The software company delivered earnings of $1.44 per share, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 67 cents.
Salesforce also reported quarterly revenues of $5.15 billion surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $4.9 billion and a 29% jump year on year. Robust demand for cloud computing solutions customers due to undergoing digital transformation was a major boost to the company’s quarterly report. (Read More)
These Stocks Are Poised to Soar Past the Pandemic
The COVID-19 outbreak has shifted consumer behavior dramatically, and a handful of high-tech companies have stepped up to keep America running. Right now, investors in these companies have a shot at serious profits. For example, Zoom jumped 108.5% in less than 4 months while most other stocks were sinking.
Our research shows that 5 cutting-edge stocks could skyrocket from the exponential increase in demand for “stay at home” technologies. This could be one of the biggest buying opportunities of this decade, especially for those who get in early.
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Microsoft Corporation (MSFT): Free Stock Analysis Report
The Home Depot, Inc. (HD): Free Stock Analysis Report
Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN): Free Stock Analysis Report
Apple Inc. (AAPL): Free Stock Analysis Report
The Walt Disney Company (DIS): Free Stock Analysis Report
Moderna, Inc. (MRNA): Free Stock Analysis Report
salesforce.com, inc. (CRM): Free Stock Analysis Report
Netflix, Inc. (NFLX): Free Stock Analysis Report
Tesla, Inc. (TSLA): Free Stock Analysis Report
Facebook, Inc. (FB): Free Stock Analysis Report
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