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U.S. Stocks Move Sharply Higher Amid Optimism About Coronavirus Vaccine

wallst 032918 18may20 lt

Following the sharp pullback seen last week, stocks moved significantly higher over the course of the trading session on Monday. The major averages all showed strong moves to the upside on the day.

The major averages pulled back off their highs going into the close but remained firmly positive. The Dow soared 911.95 points or 3.9 percent to 24,597.37, the Nasdaq surged up 220.27 points or 2.4 percent to 9,234.83 and the S&P 500 jumped 90.21 points or 3.2 percent to 2,953.91.

The rally on Wall Street came after Moderna (MRNA) reported "positive" phase one results for a potential coronavirus vaccine.

Shares of Moderna spiked by 20 percent after the biotechnology company said an early-stage human trial for a vaccine produced antibodies in all 45 participants.

Energy stocks also saw substantial strength on the day, benefiting from a sharp increase by the price of crude oil. Crude for June delivery skyrocketed $2.39 to $31.82 a barrel.

Reflecting the strength in the energy sector, the Philadelphia Oil Service Index soared by 12.5 percent, while the NYSE Arca Oil Index and the NYSE Arca Natural Gas Index jumped by 8.5 percent and 8 percent, respectively.

Significant strength was also visible among housing stocks, as reflected by the 9 percent spike by the Philadelphia Housing Sector Index.

Steel, banking and transportation stocks also saw considerable strength on the day, moving sharply higher along with most of the other major sectors.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly higher during trading on Monday. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index rose by 0.5 percent, while China's Shanghai Composite Index edged up by 0.2 percent.

The major European markets also showed strong moves to the upside on the day. While the German DAX Index spiked by 5.7 percent, the French CAC 40 Index jumped by 5.2 percent and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index surged up by 4.3 percent.

In the bond market, treasuries moved sharply lower over the course of the session. Subsequently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, advanced by 10.4 basis points to 0.744 percent.

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