© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The Wall St. sign is seen near the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, USA, May 4, 2021. REUTERS / Brendan McDermid
By Shreyashi Sanyal and Sruthi Shankar
(Reuters) – Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a record high on Thursday as economically sensitive stocks rose after an upbeat weekly jobless report while vaccine producers fell as President Joe Biden backed plans to waive patents on COVID-1
Cyclical sectors including economics and industry rose after a Labor Department report showed that initial statelessness claims amounted to a seasonally adjusted 498,000 for the week ending May 1, compared to 590,000 in the previous week.
Investors are now awaiting a more comprehensive wage report, which is not a farm, on Friday for clues about the strength of the labor market and possibly the US Federal Reserve’s stance on monetary policy.
“Today’s reading is further proof that we are one step closer to full economic recovery, faster than some may have expected,” said Mike Loewengart, Chief Investment Officer at E * TRADE Financial.
“So as we see a serious momentum building on the job front, all eyes will be on how this plays into action taken by the Fed, if any.”
Shares in Pfizer Inc. (NYSE :), Modern (NASDAQ 🙂 Inc, Johnson & Johnson (NYSE 🙂 and Novavax (NASDAQ 🙂 Inc, all involved in the manufacture of COVID-19 vaccines, fell between 0.2% and 1.7%.
The falls were triggered after the White House said Biden made the decision to back a proposed exemption from COVID-19 vaccine intellectual property rights.
The S&P 500 healthcare sector fell 0.8%, while the Nasdaq biotechnology index fell 1.2%.
Modern shares cut some losses after they said countries across the globe would continue to buy its COVID-19 vaccine for years, even if no patents are waived on the shots. [nL4N2MT38S]
“Clearly, companies spend so much time and money protecting their trade secrets that I think it was a bit of a shock to many to see those kinds of proposals go through,” said JJ Kinahan, chief marketing strategist at TD Ameritrade.
Shares of highly valued technology-related stocks such as Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ :), Apple Inc (NASDAQ :), Alphabet (NASDAQ 🙂 Inc and Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ 🙂 traded mixed.
Kl. 16:16 ET it rose by 156.12 points or 0.46% at 34,386.46, the S&P 500 rose 10.64 points or 0.26% at 4,178.23 and it fell 17.06 points or 0.13% at 13,565.37.
Among other stocks, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ 🙂 rose 3.5% after the drugmaker reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit, saying it expects demand for its COVID-19 antibody treatment to stop.
Uber Technologies (NYSE 🙂 Inc fell 8.5% as it signaled it would pay drivers more to get cars back on the road and revealed a $ 600 million fee to give UK drivers benefits.
Declining issues exceeded the number of advances for a 1.25-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and for a 2.17-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded 100 new 52-week highs and no new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 90 new highs and 126 new lows.