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Dow rises in excess of 200 points, hits record very high as Wall Street kicks off last week of 2020

 Stocks traded higher on Monday ahead of the very last trading week of 2020 and as President Donald Trump suddenly signed an economic comfort bill.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 207 points, or maybe 0.7 %. The S&P 500 climbed 0.7 %, and the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.6 %. All three major indexes hit record highs at the open.

President Donald Trump signed a $900 billion Covid 19 relief bill into law, averting a government shutdown and extending unemployment benefits to millions of Americans. The signing came many days after Trump suggested he would veto the legislation, demanding $2,000 immediate payments to Americans, rather than $600.

Most of the bluster neither considerably changed to perspective for stocks, as markets still expected (and ultimately received) stimulus of a minimum of $900 billion to pass, wrote Tom Essaye, founder of The Sevens Report.

The five pillars of the rally (Federal stimulus, FOMC stimulus, vaccine rollout, divided government and no double dip-recession) re-main mainly in place, and until that changes, longer term view and the moderate for stocks will be positive, Essaye included.

Apple led the Dow higher, rising 2.5 %. Tech as well as supplies were the best performing sectors in the S&P 500, gaining 0.9 % along with 0.8 %, respectively.

Wall Street is coming off a quiet holiday week where the major averages were flat. The S&P 500 fell 0.2 % last week as some investors got the chips off to the year end. The 30-stock Dow eked out a 0.1 % gain for the very same period.

Profit-taking could ramp up in the very last week of the year, that has so far seen surprisingly strong returns. The S&P 500 has acquired 15.4 % year to date, while the Dow has climbed 6.4 %. The Nasdaq has soared 43.2 % this season as investors favored high-growth technology names while in the continued Covid-19 pandemic.

Dr. Anthony Fauci warned on Sunday that the country may see a surge in new Covid 19 infections following Christmas along with New Year’s celebrations. Two vaccines by Pfizer and Moderna have begun the distribution process this month. And so far more than one million men and women in the U.S. are vaccinated.

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