Dow Rallies 240 Points on Signs of Economic Growth, Vaccine Optimism
The Dow Jones rallied 0.9% on Friday.
Positive retail sales and optimism about Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine helped pump the U.S. stock market.
Positive news about the 737 MAX in Europe saw Boeing rally over 3%.
The Dow Jones jumped 240 points on Friday, as strong U.S. retail sales sparked risk-on sentiment, while Pfizer is hoping to have its vaccine ready for emergency use by November.
Dow Jones Rises on Strong Data, Pfizer Vaccine
All three major U.S. stock market indices rose on Friday, with the Dow Jones leading the way. The Nasdaq was less buoyant with a 0.3% gain, and the S&P 500 rallied 0.5%.
U.S. economic data were mostly positive to close the week, as Michigan consumer sentiment beat forecasts and retail sales comfortably beat expectations with a 1.9% jump. Strong retail sales data highlight the success of previous rounds of fiscal stimulus in aiding households impacted by the pandemic.
Unfortunately, with an urgently needed aid package not yet agreed upon in Congress, the recent data could mark a temporary peak in the recovery. Economist James Knightley at ING is not confident that such impressive retail stats can persist as job losses mount:
There will be more challenges for retailers as the employment picture seems to be softening. High-frequency Homebase employment data is flat-lining while yesterday’s weekly initial claims data moving up towards 900,000 underscores the strains that continue in the jobs market. This suggests we are likely to see only a limited rise in October payrolls with some forecasters foreseeing the possibility of an outright fall.