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Dow Ends Higher After Turnaround on Rising Energy Stocks, Stimulus

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·3 min read
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By Yasin Ebrahim

Investing.com - The Dow closed higher Tuesday led by a rise in energy stocks and further signs of progress on efforts from lawmakers to reach a consensus on the $908 billion stimulus bill.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.35%, or 104 points after recovery from intraday losses. The S&P 500 was up 0.28%, while the Nasdaq Composite added 0.50% to close at record highs.

Hopes for a stimulus package before the end of the year received a boost as the White House is reportedly pressing Senate Republicans to consider including a second stimulus check in the final bipartisan $908 billion relief proposal, the Washington Post reported. Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell was said to have floated the idea of dropping the stimulus check, government support for state and local, and liability insurance from coronavirus-related claims - three key sticking points from the bill.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, however, said there was support from both sides of the political aisle for state and local government support.

The ongoing talks on Capitol Hill come in the wake of a historic day on the vaccine front as the UK began to distribute the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. In the U.S., meanwhile, the Food and Drug Administration said the inoculation met its safety standards, with many expecting the health regulator to grant the vaccine emergency use authorization in the coming days.

The vaccine news eased investor worries about the economic impact from fresh lockdown measures across states to curb the spread of infections and injected a shot of optimism across value stocks, with energy stocks leading the advance.

Pioneer Natural Resources (NYSE:PXD), Occidental Petroleum (NYSE:OXY), and Marathon Oil (NYSE:MRO) were among the biggest gainers in energy, with the latter up 6% as investors bet on a vaccine-fueled uptick in demand.

Industrials were not far behind, up nearly 1%, underpinned by an 8% surge in Equifax (NYSE:EFX) as the consumer credit reporting company received an upgrade from Barclays (LON:BARC) to overweight from underweight.

Boeing (NYSE:BA) fell 0.7% after the aircraft maker said orders for its beleaguered 737 Max, which was involved in two fatal crashes, declined by 63 last month, taking the total cancellations for the year through November to 1,068.

Ahead of key quarterly reports from Broadcom (NASDAQ:AVGO), Adobe (NASDAQ:ADBE) and Costco (NASDAQ:COST) later this week, investors digested mixed earnings from AutoZone and Stitch Fix .

AutoZone (NYSE:AZO) reported earnings of $18.61 a share that topped expectations, but revenue of $3.15 billion fell short of estimates, sending its shares down 5%.

Stitch Fix, meanwhile, surged 39% after reporting a surprise fiscal first-quarter profit on higher revenue, prompting a slew of analysts on Wall Street to upgrade their estimates on the stock.

RBC lifted its price target on Stitch Fix (NASDAQ:SFIX) to $64 from $50 amid expectations for net additions and revenue growth acceleration, and Ebitda margin expansion in fiscal 2021.

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