Vaccine and treatment hopes extend bull run
Hopes for a COVID vaccine and treatment lifted markets in Toronto and New York to start the week and extend the current bull run. The S&P rallied 1% to close above 3,400 for the first time while the Nasdaq made another new high, rising 0.6%, and the Dow climbed 1.35%. The TSX gained 0.66%, lifted by the rising price of oil which itself was encouraged by the COVID news.
On Sunday, the U.S. FDA authorized a treatment that uses antibody-rich blood plasma from recovered patients. The FDA maintains that initial trials indicate the method is safe, but admits that more tests are needed. Trump celebrated the news and authorized the “emergency use” of this treatment, but the World Health Organization and America’s own Dr. Anthony Fauci have reservations about the early data. Trump is also considering fast-tracking AstraZeneca’s experimental vaccine that it’s developing with Oxford University with the aim of deploying it before the November U.S. vote. Trump has been lagging Democrat Joe Biden in presidential polls and his efforts to contain COVID has faced universal criticism.
Travel and leisure stocks shot up with American Airlines soaring 10.53% and Carnival Cruises jumping over 10%. U.S. energy rose 2.75%. Apple created another new high by breaking $500 ahead of its 4-1 stock split. In Toronto, energy rocketed up 4.3%. Chorus Aviation was among the biggest gainers, up 9.13%, while bus-maker NFI Group surged 6.82%