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U.S. Stocks Moving Mostly Higher Amid Easing Omicron Concerns

wallstreet aug14 06dec21 lt

Stocks have moved mostly higher in morning trading on Monday, partly offsetting the significant weakness seen last week. The major averages have all moved to the upside, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq joining its counterparts in positive territory after an early dip.

The major averages have seen further upside in recent trading, reaching new highs for the young session. The Dow is up 592.32 points or 1.7 percent at 35,172.40, the Nasdaq is up 69.73 points or 0.5 percent at 15,155.20 and the S&P 500 is up 47.81 points or 1.1 percent at 4,586.24.

The strength on Wall Street partly reflects easing concerns about the Omicron variant of the coronavirus amid indications the new strain causes milder symptoms.

President Joe Biden's chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNN it is too early to make definitive statements but said early signals regarding the severity of Omicron are "encouraging."

Fauci also expressed optimism the Biden administration could lift travel restrictions on several African nations in a "reasonable period of time."

The turnaround by the Nasdaq may also be due to bargain hunting after the tech-heavy index ended last Friday's trading at its lowest closing level in well over a month.

Meanwhile, the jump by the Dow comes amid strong gains by Amgen (AMGN) Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) and Disney (DIS).

Airline stocks have skyrocketed amid easing concerns about the Omicron variant, with the NYSE Arca Airline Index soaring by 5.3 percent. The index continues to rebound after hitting its lowest levels in a year last week.

Significant strength has also emerged among steel stocks, as reflected by the 2.2 percent jump by the NYSE Arca Steel Index.

Telecom stocks are also turning in a strong performance in morning trading, driving the NYSE Arca North American Telecom Index up by 2.1 percent.

Housing, oil service and banking stocks are also seeing considerable strength, while Nvidia (NVDA) is leading the semiconductor sector lower as the graphics chipmaker faces continued obstacles to its planned takeover of British chipmaker ARM.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower during trading on Monday. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index fell by 0.4 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index tumbled by 1.8 percent.

Meanwhile, the major European markets have shown strong moves to the upside on the day. While the German DAX Index has advanced by 0.7 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index are both jumping by 1.1 percent.

In the bond market, treasuries are giving back ground after moving sharply higher in recent sessions. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is up by 4.6 basis points at 1.389 percent.

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