Stocks climb as Yellen gives investors big dose of coronavirus stimulus hopes

CFRA director of equity research Ken Leone discusses his expectations for the year in terms

U.S. equity markets rallied Tuesday in President Trump’s final full day in office as traders weighed Treasury Secretary nominee Janet Yellen’s Senate testimony on Capitol Hill which included a big dose of fresh stimulus hopes.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 30930.52 +116.26 +0.38%
SP500 S&P 500 3798.91 +30.66 +0.81%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 13197.179496 +198.68 +1.53%

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 116 points, or 0.38%, while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.81% and 1.53%, respectively. The major averages were closed Monday in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images

Yellen, the former Federal Reserve chair, appeared before the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday for her confirmation hearing. Yellen said Congress needs to “act big” to combat the economic slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, including extending more aid to families and providing additional money to expedite the distribution of vaccines.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
GS GOLDMAN SACHS GROUP INC. 294.20 -6.81 -2.26%
BAC BANK OF AMERICA CORP. 32.77 -0.24 -0.73%

In stocks, Goldman Sachs Group reported strong quarterly results that were bolstered by continued strength in dealmaking and trading. Annual investment banking revenue hit a record while trading revenue was the strongest in a decade.

Bank of America reported a quarterly profit that exceeded estimates but revenue fell short. The firm’s board of directors announced a $3.2 billion share buyback plan.

BIDEN’S TRILLION-DOLLAR SPENDING MAY RESTORE INFLATION MISSING SINCE ’08 CRISIS

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
WMT WALMART INC. 143.39 -1.25 -0.86%
WU WESTERN UNION 22.37 +0.44 +2.01%

In deals, Walmart will begin offering Western Union services in 4,700 stores globally, according to the companies.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
LITE LUMENTUM HOLDINGS 94.60 -11.72 -11.02%
COHR COHERENT 197.01 +45.06 +29.65%

Lumentum Holdings agreed to buy laser manufacturer Coherent Inc. for $5.7 billion in cash and stock. Coherent shareholders will receive $100 cash and 1.1851 shares Lumentum shares for each Coherent share they own.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
TSLA TESLA INC. 844.55 +18.39 +2.23%

Elsewhere, Tesla Inc. delivered its first made-in-China Model Y crossover vehicle.

And General Motors hitting a fresh record after Microsoft disclosed its taken a stake in the run of the Cruise self-driving car company during a $2 billion funding round that values the operation at $30 billion.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
GM GENERAL MOTORS COMPANY 54.84 +4.87 +9.75%
MSFT MICROSOFT CORP. 216.44 +3.79 +1.78%

GameStop Corp. shares squeezed higher for the third time in four sessions as short-sellers continued to head for the exit. Shares had gained 78% over the three trading sessions through Friday.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
GME GAMESTOP CORP 39.36 +3.86 +10.87%

In commodities, West Texas Intermediate crude oil ticked up 62 cents to $52.98 per barrel and gold climbed $10.20 to $1,839.50 an ounce.

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European markets were lower across the board with Britain’s FTSE 100 down 0.11%, Germany’s DAX 30 slipping 0.24% and France’s CAC 40 falling 0.33%. .

Asian markets ended mixed with China’s Shanghai Composite sliding 0.83% while Japan’s Nikkei 225 rallied 1.39% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 2.7%.