US stocks rise again on vaccine progress

The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.6 per cent to 3,325.52, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 0.3 per cent to 10,978.77. The Nasdaq has ended at records the last two days. — Reuters pic
The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.6 per cent to 3,325.52, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 0.3 per cent to 10,978.77. The Nasdaq has ended at records the last two days. — Reuters pic

NEW YORK, Aug 5 — Wall Street stocks opened higher today, extending a positive run on anticipation of more fiscal stimulus from Washington and progress on vaccines for the coronavirus pandemic.

About 30 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.0 per cent at 27,097.60.

The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.6 per cent to 3,325.52, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 0.3 per cent to 10,978.77. The Nasdaq has ended at records the last two days.

The US added a disappointing 167,000 private sector jobs in July, much below the level of the last two months and suggesting the recovery has slowed, according to payrolls firm ADP.

Analysts expect a deal in Washington on another package of fiscal support for the coronavirus-battered US economy. Key lawmakers have signalled progress on the talks, but have yet to resolve partisan disagreements.

Sentiment was also boosted by signs of forward movement on vaccines.

Johnson & Johnson rose 1.0 per cent after announcing it agreed to supply the US government with 100 million doses of a Covid-19 vaccine following regulatory approval in a US$1 billion (RM4.2 billion) deal.

That announcement came after Novavax announced positive clinical results of another vaccine candidate, boosting shares by more than 18 per cent.

Disney was another big gainer, climbing 9.3 per cent despite reporting a US$4.7 billion quarterly loss due to the coronavirus, which emptied theme parks and battered the live sports industry that feeds its ESPN telecasts.

However, investors focused on strong results at its Disney+ streaming service, which already has more than 100 million paid subscribers. — AFP

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