Dow stages sharp climb early Monday, knocks on door of 30,000 on back of Moderna coronavirus vaccine report

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Equity benchmarks added to gains early Monday after Moderna Inc. said its vaccine candidate proved 94.5% effective in preventing COVID-19 infections, as investors looked past a continued surge in new cases of the disease and the lack of progress toward another round of aid for strapped consumers. The Moderna news comes a week after Pfizer Inc. [s” PFE] and BioNTech SE announced the first effective COVID-19 vaccine, which has sparked an equity rally and a violent rotation out of stocks that have benefited from the stay-at-home environment and into those considered value by some metric. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 340 points, or 1.2%, at 29,819 the S&P 500 index rose gained 0.7% to reach 3,611, while the Nasdaq Composite Index was up about 0.1% at 11,836. In economic data, the New York Fed’s Empire State business conditions index fell 4.2 points to 6.3 in November, the regional Fed bank said Monday. Economists had expected a reading of 13.5, according to a survey by Econoday. In corporate news, shares of Casper Sleep Inc. tumbled in premarket trading Monday, after the mattress-in-a-box seller reported a wider-than-expected third-quarter loss on revenue that surprisingly declined, citing supply-chain challenges given as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. In deal news, PNC Financial Services Group Inc. agreed to buy the U.S. arm of Spain’s BBVA for $11.6 billion, the companies said Monday, in one of the largest bank tie-ups since the financial crisis.
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