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Global stock markets mixed

by Jonathan Adams
stock market

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.62 percent, the S&P 500 declined 0.44 percent, the Nasdaq Composite gained 0.5 percent, FTSEurofirst 300 index rose 0.30 percent

Global stock markets were mixed on Monday as the start of the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out in the United States offered some respite to investors, but spikes in infection and death rates tempered optimism.

Currency markets were dominated by news that London and Brussels had agreed to “go the extra mile” to try to salvage a Brexit trade agreement, lifting the British pound and euro against the struggling dollar.

Progress on coronavirus vaccines boosted sentiment, with the first doses shipped across the United States as part of an effort to inoculate more than 100 million people by the end of March.

However, some traders noted that optimism about the vaccine had already been factored in, limiting upside for investors.

We’ve been trading off the same vaccine headlines for three or four months and eventually you’ve got to think that most of that is priced in, said Dennis Dick, a trader at Bright Trading LLC. This market is 100% relying on this vaccine.

Second waves of the pandemic forced Germany, the Netherlands and London back into stricter lockdowns. Cases surged in Japan, South Korea and parts of the United States as well.

The vaccine has and will likely continue to provide a tailwind to the market that is allowing investors to look beyond record case levels, hospitalizations and deaths, analysts at JPMorgan said in a note.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, after a sharp climb in early trading, fell 184.82 points, or 0.62 percent, to close at 29,861.55. The S&P 500 lost 15.97 points, or 0.44 percent, to 3,647.49 and the Nasdaq Composite added 62.17 points, or 0.5 percent, to 12,440.04.

The euro was last up 0.31 percent, at $1.2148, while Europe’s broad FTSEurofirst 300 index added 0.30 percent, at 1,513.23.

MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan fell 2.47 points, or 0.38%, to 642.04.



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