Stock Market Update Tuesday, March 17th, 2020
Today it was all about stimulus.
President Trump held a press conference with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, outlining plans for an $850 billion stimulus package.
The administration is considering deferred tax payments (up to 90 days) and direct payments to U.S. citizens (possibly $1,000). The direct payments could be available in the next 2 weeks.
Earlier in the day, there was news that the Treasury Department approved a plan that helps the Fed pump money into the economy. The Fed will be able to buy debt directly from companies.
With stimulus and a more detailed plan being the focus, stocks bounced back after the worst day since 1987.
But it was still a wild ride.
Futures went limit up (a 5.0% move higher where trading is halted), then dropped ahead of the open.
We actually saw a sharp sell off after the open and stocks even turned negative for the day…after being up 5.0% overnight!
But after making session lows, stocks rallied. And then swung wildly in the afternoon before finishing the day with nice gains.
Up almost 6.0% across the board, yesterday’s losses were cut in half.
Here’s where the major indices ended the day:
- The S&P finished with a 6.0% gain. Up 143 points, the S&P ended at 2,529.
- The DOW ended 5.2% higher. Adding 1,048 points the DOW closed at 21,237.
- The NASDAQ was up 6.2%. With a 427, the NASDAQ finished at 7,329.
Crude Oil (CL) was crushed for the 2nd day in a row. Down 5.9%, Crude Oil finished the day at $27.01 a barrel.
The VIX (aka “Fear Index”) dropped 8.25% today, and finished at 75.91.
Apple (AAPL) was up 4.4% today.
And Amazon (AMZN) rallied 7.0% after news that the company is hiring 100,000 warehouse and delivery drivers to help with the big increase in deliveries.
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (REGN) was a nice winner today as well. The stock was up 11.5% after news that they hope to have a COVID-19 drug available for trial by summer.
But Marriott (MAR) had a tough time, losing 12.9% on news that the company will start furloughing workers without pay.
There are approximately 5,000 confirmed cases and 97 deaths in the US. Globally, there are 194,000 cases and almost 8,000 deaths.
In today’s press conference the President said that the COVID-19 crisis could stretch into August.
And right now investors and economists believe a recession is almost guaranteed (two or more quarters of a shrinking economy). The unknown is just how long it will last.
Here is the economic calendar for the week:
Real Time Economic Calendar provided by Investing.com.
This Stock Market Update was provided by Rockwell Trading Services LLC.