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Stocks fell Monday in the very first session of 2021, as concerns of a post holiday spike in virus cases compounded with uncertainty of the outcome of the Georgia Senate runoff elections.

All three major indices dropped more than one % by market close on Monday, and the Dow fell 1.25 % due to its worst start to a season after 2016. Earlier in the session, both the S&P 500 and Dow had ticked up to record intraday levels before quickly paring gains. Bitcoin prices (BTC-USD) additionally extended their the latest rally of the weekend, breaking above $34,000 to set a whole new all time high before steadying at at least $31,000.

New COVID-19 cases in the U.S. reach a one-day history of about 300,000 over the weekend, based on data from Bloomberg and Johns Hopkins Faculty, following an increase in travel for a resumption and the holidays of testing after a holiday pause.

“The widely anticipated post holiday spike in cases is actually underway, and the seven-day average likely will hit a new record in the future this week,” Ian Shepherdson, chief economist for Pantheon Macroeconomics, said in a note Monday. “We’re braced for a larger rebound than was found in early December, before cases ultimately peak about the middle of the month.”

Traders have been eyeing developments around the Georgia Senate runoff elections, that will decide command of the Senate and the balance of power in Congress. Republicans presently maintain an only narrow majority in the chamber, or 50 seats to Democrats’ 48 seats when excluding Georgia.

With strategists having largely assumed a divided government outcome for 2021, a Democratic sweep following Tuesday’s elections could spark a 10 % selloff in the S&P 500, Oppenheimer strategist John Stoltzfus said Monday. Polling data from FiveThirtyEight exhibited both Democratic candidates with narrow leads as of Monday morning. Nonetheless, Republicans have historically typically won the Senate seats in the state.

Traders are heading into the new year with a vaccine roll-out under way and more stimulus recently passed, offering hopes of a stronger recovery once inoculations let the restrictions which have swept the land for months to ease. Still, hurdles exist to the perspective, and one of the biggest making up your mind factors in economic growth as well as rebound in profitability for many companies may be the achievements of vaccine distribution as COVID 19 cases continue to spike, many strategists have said.

“The large issue for the global economy over the year ahead will be how quickly populations are vaccinated, particularly among exposed organizations including the older folk and individuals with underlying health conditions who make up the majority of hospitalizations,” Deutsche Bank economists including Henry Allen wrote in a note. “If the most affected groups will be vaccinated fast, that might pave the way for a gradual easing of restrictions as well as a return to something closer to normality.”

Markets will likely be closely watching any problems with COVID-19 or perhaps the vaccine rollout, not least given the new variants which had been found in the UK and South Africa which spread a lot quicker and also have been present in increasing amounts of countries,” they added.

As of Monday morning, the very first doses of a COVID 19 vaccine had been granted to much more than 4.5 million men and women in the U.S., comprising more than 1 % of the nation’s population. Nevertheless, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Infectious Diseases and Allergy, said President-elect Joe Biden’s goal of ramping up distribution to vaccinate hundred million individuals in his first 100 days became a “realistic goal,” according to an interview with ABC on Sunday.

4:03 p.m. ET: Stocks end lower, Dow posts most awful start to the year after 2016
Here is where the three major indices settled at the conclusion of the trading down Monday:

S&P 500 (GSPC): -55.42 (-1.48 %) to 3,700.65

Dow (DJI): 382.59 (1.25 %) to 30,223.89

Nasdaq (IXIC): 189.83 (1.47 %) to 12,698.45

12:16 p.m. ET: Stock sell off accelerates, Dow drops 650+ points
The three major indices extended their declines Monday afternoon, and the Dow dropped over 650 points, or maybe 2.2 %. Shares of Coca-Cola and Boeing lagged, and virtually every component in the 30-stock index was in the red.

The S&P and Nasdaq 500 also shed more than two % intraday, along with each of the FAANG names – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Alphabet and Netflix – sank. The actual estates, industrials as well as information technology sectors led the declines in the S&P 500.

11:23 a.m. ET: Stocks turn lower, Dow sheds 450+ points
Below had been the primary moves in markets, as of 11:23 a.m. ET:

S&P 500 (GSPC): -50.93 (1.36 %) to 3,705.14

Dow (DJI): 478.84 (-1.56 %) to 30,127.64

Nasdaq (IXIC): -156.16 (1.22 %) to 12,731.33

Crude (CL=F): -1dolar1 1.00 (2.06 %) to $47.52 a barrel

Gold (GC=F): +$48.40 (+2.55 %) to $1,943.50 per ounce

10-year Treasury (TNX): +1.4 bps to yield 0.926%

10:00 a.m. ET: U.S. building paying slowed much more than expected in November, although residential construction spending stayed strong
U.S. construction spending increased by 0.9 % in November over October, the Commerce Department said Monday, following an upwardly revised rise of 1.6 % in October. This came in slightly below consensus economists’ estimates for a 1.0 % increase, as reported by Bloomberg data. Still, construction spending was up 3.8 % with exactly the same month in 2019.

A month-over-month decline in non-residential private building weighed on overall construction spending. Residential private construction, nevertheless, led the upside, increasing by 2.7 % month-over-month and 16.1 % year-over-year amid strong housing market activity.

9:45 a.m. ET: U.S. manufacturing sector activity jumped to a 6 year high in December: IHS Markit
The U.S. manufacturing industry expanded at the fastest rate in 6 years in December, based on IHS Markit, in the most up indication of the recovery in goods producing industries.

IHS Markit’s finalized manufacturing sector purchasing managers’ index rose to 57.1 in December following an earlier print of 56.5 for the month. Readings above the neutral degree of 50.0 indicate expansion of an industry.

However, the sector’s ongoing expansion could be curbed as COVID 19 cases rise and new restrictions come into play in the near term, noted Chris Williamson, chief business economist for IHS Markit.

“Producers of machinery as well as equipment reported suffered strong demand, suggesting organizations are increasing their funding spending. Producers of inputs to various other factories also fared well, as companies sought to restock their warehouses,” Williamson said in a statement. “However, the survey also highlights how suppliers are not just facing weaker demand situations as a result of the pandemic, but are in addition seeing COVID 19 disrupt supply chains further, causing delivery delays. These delays are limiting generation abilities as well as driving producers’ input rates sharply greater, adding to the sector’s woes.”

9:32 a.m. ET: Stocks open slightly higher
Here had been the main actions in markets, as of 9:32 a.m. ET:

S&P 500 (GSPC): +8.84 (+0.24 %) to 3,764.91

Dow (DJI): +19.97 (+0.07 %) to 30,626.45

Nasdaq (IXIC): +46.34 (+0.36 %) to 12,934.60

Crude (CL=F): 1dolar1 0.17 (-0.35 %) to $48.35 a barrel

Gold (GC=F): +$49.30 (+2.6 %) to $1,944.40 per ounce

10-year Treasury (TNX): +4 bps to yield 0.952%

9:21 a.m. ET: Moderna raises lower end of COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing estimate, invests to give up to one billion doses in 2021
Moderna (MRNA) shares increased in early trading after the company said in a Monday morning update that its new “base case global output estimate” is for 600 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine of its in 2021, up from the 500 million it noticed earlier.

The company is also continuing to invest as well as put in to the workforce of its to provide up to one billion doses this season, it added.

Moderna anticipates 100 million doses are going to be available in the U.S. by the end of hte very first quarter, and that 200 million total doses is going to be readily available by the end of the next. To date, 18 million doses have been delivered to the government.

8:16 a.m. ET: Google workers launch union as tensions with executives grow
More than 200 personnel at Google’s parent company Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) joined a recently created union known as Alphabet Workers Union, following rising discontent over executives’ handling of a number of incidents during the last 2 years. This marked the first significant unionization effort inside a big Tech organization.

Personnel at Google have recently assailed Alphabet executives and management teams over military contracts, their treatment of contract workers and handling of sexual harassment allegations. In early December, the National Labor Relations Board alleged Google had illegally fired 2 employees which had sought to unionize in 2019.

“Our union is going to work to make sure that workers know very well what they’re working on, and can perform their work at a good wage, with no fear of abuse, retaliation or maybe discrimination,” Google employees Parul Koul and Chewy Shaw, executive chair as well as vice chair of the Alphabet Workers Union, said in a brand new York Times op-ed on Monday.

The brand new union will include things like elected leadership and due paying members, and often will be prepared to take other Alphabet workers as well as contractors.

“We’ve consistently worked tough to generate a rewarding and supportive workplace for our workforce,” an Alphabet spokesperson told Yahoo Finance. “Of course the workers of ours have protected labor rights that we support. But as we have always done, we’ll continue engaging right with all our employees.”

7:55 a.m. ET: Oppenheimer sees 6-10 % drop in S&P 500′ should Democrats win both seats’ in Georgia runoff elections
The Georgia Senate runoff elections present a near term threat to equities, plus an outcome in which both Democratic challengers emerge victorious can spark a notable drop in the stock sector, according to Oppenheimer strategist John Stoltzfus.

“A Democratic sweep of the two run off elections in Georgia may cause the US equity wide market to experience a downdraft of anywhere between six % as well as 10%,” Stoltzfus said in a note published Monday. “In the experience of ours the markets like that Washington’s Capitol Hill have sufficient checks as well as balances in place to keep political power out of just one party’s hands.”

“It is believed by not just a few people on Main Street also as on Wall Street that if tomorrow’s runoff results in a sweep for the Democrats – providing them with command of the Senate plus the House – that it will bode ill for companies with the likelihood that corporate tax rates could rise substantially,” he said.

“In addition, a Democratic sweep of Georgia would probably see a boost in new government plan generation and spending at a moment when lots of voters, market participants and marketplace leaders are concerned about the sizable degree of debt that the Treasury has had to take on to leave a financial’ bridge over troubled water’ via fiscal stimulus,” he added.

Republicans currently control 50 seats in the Senate, while Democrats control forty eight. Which means that a Democratic victory for both seating would provide the party the majority in the chamber when including Vice President elect Kamala Harris’s potential to cast tie-breaking votes.

7:18 a.m. ET Monday: Stock futures point to a higher open
The following were the main moves in markets, as of 7:18 a.m. ET:

S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,765.5, up 16.75 points or perhaps 0.45%

Dow futures (YM=F): 30,642.00, up 145 points or 0.48%

Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 12,935.25, up 49.75 points or 0.39%

Crude (CL=F): 1dolar1 0.05 (-0.1 %) to $48.47 a barrel

Gold (GC=F): +$41.30 (+2.18 %) to $1,936.40 per ounce

10-year Treasury (TNX): +1.6 bps, yielding 0.928%

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