Day Traders Diary
The major averages sold off sharply in an afternoon led by shares of companies with the most to lose if there are any hiccups in the reopening of the global economy from the Covid-19 pandemic. The S&P 500 declined 0.76% to 3,910, pressured by industrials and materials. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 308 points, or 0.9%, to 32,423 as Caterpillar slipped 3.4%. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite slid 1.1% to 13,227. The small-cap Russell 2000 dropped 3.6% to 2,185.69 for its worst day since June.
Travel and retail stocks sold off in lockstep amid fresh Covid restrictions globally. Shares of Carnival and Norwegian cruise lines slumped more than 7% each. American Airlines and United Airlines also dropped more than 6% apiece. Brick-and-mortar retailer Gap slid nearly 8%.
The World Health Organization said most regions of the globe are seeing an increase in new Covid cases as highly contagious variants continue to spread. Germany is extending its lockdown until April 18, while nearly a third of France entered a month-long shutdown on Saturday. Oil prices fell more than 6% amid the threat of a third wave of global infections.
The U.S. is administering about 2.5 million Covid vaccine shots every day. However, the number of new cases is increasing in 21 states as governors relax restrictions on businesses.
On Tuesday, a U.S. health agency expressed concern that AstraZeneca may have included outdated information in trial results of its Covid-19 vaccine.
Stocks' rally took a pause as the new bull market officially turned one year old. Tuesday marks the one-year anniversary of the pandemic bottom after the unprecedented health crisis sent the S&P 500 tumbling 30% in just 22 days in the fastest bear market sell-off ever.
Stocks have rebounded fiercely from the Covid-induced trough with the S&P 500 rallying about 80% since the low one year ago, marking the best start to a new bull market on record. The Nasdaq Composite is up more than 90%, while the Dow has surged about 75% during the same period.
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