Stocks turned sharply higher Friday, on the heels of the worst month for tech stocks since the peak of the pandemic, boosted by positive data linked to Merck’s late-stage coronavirus treatment pill.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 515 points, or 1.52% to 34,359, while the broader S&P 500 gained 1.19%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq advanced 0.75%.
The 10-year Treasury yield slipped to 1.474%. An increase in rates bit into tech stocks at the end of the September.
A stronger-than-expected reading for September factory activity, paired against the fastest annual increase in the Fed’s preferred inflation gauge — the PCE Price Index — added to the market’s complexity.
In Washington, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reportedly said there would be a vote Friday on the $1 trillion infrastructure bill that has divided the Democratic for months. Pelosi ruled against bringing the bill to the floor Thursday night.
Progressives have threatened voted the bill down unless they get assurances the Senate will pass a larger bill to invest in such areas climate policy, household tax credits and health care expansion.
President Joe Biden will travel to Capitol Hill Friday afternoon to speak with members of the House Democratic Caucus, the White House said.
Leaving the Capitol just after midnight, Ms. Pelosi told reporters “we’re not trillions of dollars apart” and vowed “there will be a vote today” on the infrastructure measure, according to the New York Times.
Dow component Merck surged after the pharmaceutical company unveiled promising data for a COIVD antiviral treatment it said can cut the risk of hospitalization and death in at-risk patients by as much as 50%, offsetting broader market concerns linked to inflation, China growth and the recent surge in energy prices.
Live Nation Entertainment , a key re-opening play built on the group’s concert and live performance schedule, jumped on the heels of Merck’s antiviral treatment trial.
Five9 rose after shareholders rejected a $14.7 billion all-stock takeover bid from Zoom Video Communications .
Southwest Airlines took off after JPMorgan analysts upgraded the carrier to overweight from neutral and boosted their price target to $70 from $64.
This article was originally published by TheStreet.