Stock Market Extends Gains on Upbeat COVID-19 Case Count

Wall Street is unpacking plenty of positive news

by Laura McCandless

Published on May 20, 2020 at 12:12 PM
Updated on May 20, 2020 at 12:21 PM

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is up over 430 points midday, as doubts regarding Moderna's (MRNA) vaccine data are overshadowed by the static count in coronavirus cases, despite an ease in country-wide lockdowns. Encouraged by strong retail earnings and a fresh rise of oil prices, the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) are also eyeing a close in the black. 

Continue reading for more on today's market, including: 

  • Lowe's stock surges on a rise in sales.
  • CVS climbs higher after $43 million aid return. 
  • Plus, calls pop for Corning stock; the digital printing tech name seeing bull notes; and FSCT falls on a failed merger.

mmc may 20

One stock seeing unusual options activity today is Corning Inc (NYSE:GLW), up 3.3% at $21.52 at last check, following reports the company will reduce salaries of all employees by up to 40%. The specialty materials stock has seen 13,000 calls cross the tape so far -- 15 times the usual rate. Most popular is the July 21 call, where new positions are being opened. GLW has been trading sideways on the charts of late, but has now gained fresh support at the 40-day moving average. 

GLW mmc chart may 20

Topping the Nasdaq today is Kornit Digital Ltd (NASDAQ:KRNT), up 25.4% at $44.53 at last check, earlier touching a record high of $46.75, and on track for its best day ever. This rise comes after no fewer than five analysts raised their price targets, the highest from Barclays to $47, after the Israel-based company announced an up to 30% sequential growth for the second quarter, as well as lofty single-digit year-over-year revenue growth. Longer term, KRNT has surged 35% in 2020. 

On the other end of the spectrum, ForeScout Technologies Inc (NASDAQ:FSCT) is dropping rapidly on the Nasdaq, down 11.6% at $18.50 at last check, this morning touching a record low of $18.10. Earlier in the week the equity fell after Advent International put its $1.9 billion acquisition of ForeScout Technologies on hold, and today the stock is extending its losses after taking legal action against Advent. In response, FSCT is now down 43.5% year-to-date. 


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