Day Traders Diary


The stock market soared for a third straight day as investors shrugged off the release of record-breaking initial jobless claims while the Senate passed a massive economic stimulus bill amid the coronavirus outbreak. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 1,351.62 points, or 6.4%, to close at 22,552. The Dow capped off its biggest three-day surge since 1931. Over the past three days, the Dow is up more than 20%.

The S&P 500 also posted a three-day winning streak, rising 6.2% to 2,630. The Nasdaq Composite advanced 5.6% to 7,797 as Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google-parent Alphabet all jumped more than 4%.

Boeing, Chevron and Walgreens drove the Dow's gains, with each stock rising more than 10%. Utilities and real estate were the best-performing sectors in the S&P 500, both closing more than 7% higher.

The Labor Department reported that jobless benefit claims had soared to 3.28 million last week, by far a record. That number blew past the Great Recession peak of 665,000 and the all-time mark of 695,000 in October 1982. However, the number was still better than the dire estimates.

All 11 S&P 500 sectors posted strong gains today between 4.3% for consumer discretionary and 8.4% for utilities. Oil prices were unable to catch a bid, though, partly due the oil industry not being included in this stimulus bill.  

In corporate news, semiconductor stocks drew support from Micron's encouraging quarterly results and guidance. Henry Schein rose 7% as the company is contributing to the fight against COVID-19 with an antibody rapid blood test for health care professionals.

U.S. Treasuries finished the session on a higher note, as the record number of unemployment claims reminded bond investors of the negative macro environment. The 2-yr yield declined four basis points to 0.26%, and the 10-yr yield declined five basis points to 0.81%. The U.S. Dollar Index fell back below 100.00, finishing 1.6% lower at 99.43.

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