The Dow Jones Industrial Average hit new session highs midday, as Apple (AAPL) rallied and lawmakers planned to meet on a potential coronavirus stimulus deal.
The S&P 500 and Dow Jones industrials rose more than 1.1% each, while the Nasdaq advanced 0.8% in the stock market today. Small caps tracked by the Russell 2000 outperformed, up 1.7%. Volume was lower on both major exchanges vs. the same time Monday.
Congress is still trying to hammer out a stimulus deal before midnight Friday. Late Monday, a bipartisan group of senators split a $908 billion proposal into two bills. The larger bill includes items backed by both parties, including $300 a week in jobless benefits and $300 billion for business loans. The smaller bill includes more divisive issues, such as business liability protection and aid for state and local governments.
“It’s about time to get this done,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Monday night.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is scheduled to meet with congressional leaders at 4 p.m. ET to try to reach an agreement.
Tech stocks have boosted the Nasdaq to a 39% gain this year, while the S&P 500 was up 13% through Monday’s close. The Dow is up 5%, and the Russell 2000 has advanced 14%. Read The Big Picture for detailed daily market analysis.
U.S. Stock Market Today Overview
Last Update: 1:26 PM ET 12/15/2020
The market has been in new high ground after some volatility. On Nov. 4, after Election Day, IBD’s market outlook returned to “confirmed uptrend” as the major indexes staged big rallies. That gave the green light to buy leading stocks that are breaking out of solid bases.
Meantime, Covid-19 cases continue to rise globally. Worldwide cumulative coronavirus cases have topped 73.4 million, with more than 1.6 million deaths, according to Worldometer. In the U.S., confirmed cases since the beginning of the pandemic are approaching 17 million, with a death toll over 308,000.
Last week, the Food and Drug Administration approved the first U.S. Covid-19 vaccine for emergency use, from Pfizer (PFE) and BioNTech (BNTX). Vaccinations began rolling out Monday. Pfizer stock dipped 2% Tuesday, while BioNTech gained 2% in heavy volume.
FDA briefing documents today showed Moderna‘s (MRNA) vaccine “met the pre-specified success criteria.” A panel will vote Thursday on whether to recommend that the full FDA authorize the drug for emergency use. Moderna shares rose at the open but reversed to a 7% loss.
Dow Winners And Losers
Apple gapped up and rose more than 4%, breaking out past another aggressive early buy point at 125.49. The buy zone tops out at 131.76. It also remains in buy range from an earlier aggressive entry of 122.09. The conventional buy point is 138.08, according to MarketSmith chart analysis.
Apple plans to make up to 96 million iPhones in the first half of 2021, a 30% year-over-year increase, Japan’s Nikkei reported. Apple is an IBD Leaderboard stock. It’s up almost 70% this year.
Solar, alternative energy and automobile-related stocks led the upside among IBD’s 197 industry groups. Dairy products makers, drugstore and biotech stocks lagged.
AMD Breaks Out
Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) rose 2% to a new high, breaking out past an alternate 96.47 buy point. The buy range goes up to 101.29. It’s extended from an 88.82 buy point of a double-bottom base cleared Nov. 30. The chip designer was featured in Monday’s IBD 50 Stocks To Watch.
Over in the IBD 50, Esty (ETSY), Cerence (CRNC) and Floor & Decor (FND) rallied more than 3% each. Advanced Micro Devices is also in the index. Horizon Therapeutics (HZNP) and Facebook (FB), though, fell nearly 2% apiece.
The Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) advanced 1% to a new high.
Follow Nancy Gondo on Twitter at @IBD_NGondo
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