How major U.S. stock indexes fared Wednesday

How major U.S. stock indexes fared Wednesday

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 500 points, or over two percent during early trading.

Top House Republican Kevin McCarthy said he wanted House members to have at least 24 hours after the Senate vote to review the bill.

Powering the Dow's gains was Boeing Co BA.N , which jumped 13.90% after Chief Executive Dave Calhoun said the planemaker expected the 737 MAX jet to return to service by mid-year.

The stimulus includes a US$500 billion fund to help hard-hit industries and a comparable amount for direct payments of up to US$3,000 apiece to millions of U.S. families. The S&P 500 index was up 57.07 points at 2,532.63, while the Nasdaq composite was up 151.18 points at 7,535.48. Marathon Oil surged 11%, Exxon Mobil jumped 2.8%, and Chevron gained 8.5%.

Oil prices improved 52 cents to $24.53 USA a barrel.

Even as investors looked ahead to the stimulus bill, there's no guarantee that it will be enough to blunt the economic fallout from the coronavirus outbreak.

In metals markets, gold changed hands at $1,608.78 an ounce, retaining most of Tuesday's gains of nearly 5%, its biggest jump since 2008. Markets are digesting that, " said Anthony Rayner, a multiasset fund manager at Premier Miton. Globally, there were more than 470,000 cases Thursday, with a death toll surpassing 21,200, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell echoed that sentiment in a rare interview Thursday morning, telling Savannah Guthrie on NBC's "TODAY" show: "We may well be in a recession, but I would point to the difference between this and a normal recession".

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, asked how long the aid would keep the economy afloat, said: "We've anticipated three months". The virus is going to dictate the timetable here, ' he said. "We don't yet know when these social distancing measures will end, and the evidence for now is that they will continue to expand". In Europe, the pan-continental Stoxx Europe 600 declined 1.7%. The European Central Bank "broke new ground", said Florian Hense, an economist at Berenberg Bank in a note, after it gave itself more flexibility on its additional EUR750 billion ($821 billion) bond-purchase program.

However, expectations that the stimulus bill talks may extend into Wednesday morning due to the two parties working through the text and hashing out the final details, may be weighing on the US indexes during Wednesday's pre-market session.

Wall Street on Wednesday was unable to sustain strong gains from the previous session as fears about the economic toll of the coronavirus pandemic overshadowed optimism from sweeping fiscal and monetary stimulus to aid businesses and households.

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