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After the Bell: Stocks Rise Again on Vaccine Hopes

John Divine

All three indices finished the day in the green on Tuesday, as investors continued to express their optimism in gradual reopenings of both state economies and overseas countries.

News that Pfizer (ticker: PFE) and BioNTech (BNTX) teamed up to start human vaccine trials on a volunteer basis for the virus ravaging the world economy also sparked some buying Tuesday, although a rally that had seen the major indices all up around 2% gradually gave way to selling in the afternoon.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished the day up 133 points, or 0.6%, closing at 23,883.

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Disney earnings take 91% hit. Entertainment giant Walt Disney ( DIS) got off to a bad start to its post-Iger phase, as the company's first earnings call without legendary former CEO Bob Iger at the helm in 15 years saw a 91% drop in net income from continuing operations.

Diluted earnings per share fell "only" 63% last quarter, but it's clear that the theme parks that help define Disney will be impaired even when they come back online. One bright spot has been its direct-to-consumer entertainment like Hulu and the newly launched Disney+. That segment saw revenue nearly quadruple year-over-year from $1.1 billion to $4.1 billion.

Norwegian Cruise's warning spooks shareholders. In yet another tough day for cruise line stocks on Wall Street, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings ( NCLH) saw shares take a 22% hit as the company warned of ongoing liquidity issues and announced attempts to raise about $3 billion through bond and equity sales. The firm also announced it would be laying off 20% of its shoreside employees and cutting the remainder of its workforce's salary by 20%.

Concerns of virus mutation. A recent report from Los Alamos National Laboratory researchers suggests the virus may be mutating to become more easily transmissible. The work has not been peer-reviewed. But if it's true, it would not only be bad for transmissibility but also would have negative implications for the efficacy of vaccines currently being studied and tested.

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