Wall Street rallies further into record territory as number of new coronavirus cases falls

February 13, 2020 - 2 weeks ago
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Wall Street struck another bullish nerve overnight and extends the positive rally as three major U.S. stock indices hit all-time highs, as investors gauged how China contains its COVID-19 — coronavirus epidemic.

As of Tuesday, China’s National Health Commission had reported confirmed cases of the outbreak of the virus, also known as COVID-19 had claimed 1,115 lives, with the total number of confirmed cases topping 45,000.

However, the pace of newly reported cases appears to be slowing down as they hit their lowest levels since late January.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed +275.08 points higher, or +0.94%, at 29,551.42, while the S&P 500 advanced +21.70 points or +0.65% to 3,379.45.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite gained +87.02 points or +0.90% to 9,725.96.

UnitedHealth climbed more than +4% to lead the Dow higher. Nike, Apple and Caterpillar all rose more than +2%.

Tech and energy were the best-performing sectors in the S&P 500, climbing more than 1% each.

Wynn Resorts and Las Vegas Sands, two stocks tied to coronavirus worries because of their exposure to the Chinese market, each rose more than +3%.

Delta and American Airlines climbed +1.4% and +2.1%, respectively.

Meanwhile, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell testified before the Senate Banking Committee for the second day on Wednesday, citing the central bank will have an idea of the coronavirus’ impact on the U.S. economy “fairly soon.”

Corporate earnings remained in focus after Lyft reported more than $1 billion in quarterly revenue but forecast slower growth in 2020. Lyft shares slid -10.2%.

CVS Health, Molson Coors, Teva Pharmaceutical and Shopify all reported quarterly results that beat analyst expectations.

About 70% of S&P 500 companies have posted calendar fourth-quarter results. Of those companies, 71.1% have beaten analyst expectations, FactSet data shows.

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