Indexes Inch Higher on Vaccine News, U.S.-China Relations

Tesla (TSLA) and Microsoft (MSFT) earnings are out after the close today

Deputy Editor
Jul 22, 2020 at 4:31 PM
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The Dow closed up around 165 points, though a conflicting day of news had the S&P and Nasdaq hovering around fair value for most of the day. The Nasdaq rose just before the close, scoring 48 days without two consecutive losses, the longest streak since May of 1978. A vaccine deal between the U.S. government, Pfizer (PFE), and BioNTech (BNTX) boosted sentiment surrounding coronavirus, though growing U.S.-China tensions and falling bank stocks pared the broader market's gains. Investors will also be keeping a close eye on Tesla (TSLA) and Microsoft (MSFT) earnings.

  • Social media giant inches lower ahead of earnings. 
  • Verizon stock a favorite of call traders before quarterly report. 
  • Plus, biotech raises its forecast; the potential free COVID-19 vaccine; two retail stocks downgraded by UBS.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI - 27,005.84) rose 165.4 points, or 0.6% for the day. Pfizer rose to the top of the Dow, finishing 5.1% higher, while Goldman Sachs (GS) fell to the bottom, losing 2.8%.

Meanwhile, the S&P 500 Index (SPX - 3,276.02) added 18.7 points, or 0.6% for the day, and the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 10,706.13) gained 25.8 points, or 0.2% for today's session.

The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX - 24.32) lost 0.5 point, or 2.1%, for the day.



5 Items on Our Radar Today

  1. Slack (WORK) filed a complaint with the European Commission against Microsoft. The accused company responded against these claims. (Marketwatch)
  2. Google (GOOGL) launched a new tool for its search enginethat will help home buyers, particularly those who have never experienced the process or held a mortgage, answer commonly asked questions. (CNBC)
  3. Biogen stock volume surged in the options pits. 
  4. Blue-chip vaccine stock soared on billion-dollar deal. 
  5. A lean toward online shopping could hinder these two stocks

Corporate Earnings July 22

Unusual Options Activity July 22

Data courtesy of Trade-Alert

Gold Leaps Toward More Highs

Oil prices stayed fairly flat today, as progress toward a vaccine pared pressure from a weekly climb in U.S. oil supplies. The now most active, September-dated contract for crude fell 2 cents, or 0.05%, to $41.90 a barrel.

Gold futures rose as U.S.-China tensions mounted. Gold for August rose $21.20, or nearly 1.2%, to settle at $1,865.10 an ounce, marking their highest settlement since September 2011.



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