Stocks Have Reacted Positively To Covid-19 Vaccine Updates

November 18, 2020 03:15 PM
The S&P is battling to hold out above last Friday’s settlement
The resilient consumer is in the spotlight this week
Building permits and housing starts were overall firm this morning
Stock Market Update for Traders

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Tuesday's Close

E-mini S&P 500 (December): Settled at 3606.75, down 16.25

E-mini Nasdaq-100 (December): Settled at 11,975, down 30.00

The S&P is battling to hold out above last Friday’s settlement, a gap that was all but fully filled twice now; yesterday’s session low of 3,586 and today’s 3,585.75. In a landscape with many moving parts and coming off weekly gains of 7.2% and then 2.3%, holding out above Friday’s settlement in such a constructive manner is all the bulls can ask for.

Value stocks had already begun to come off an election loll, but it was Pfizer’s Monday November 9th vaccine announcement that truly powered them over the last two weeks. Of course, Eli Lilly and Moderna have added tailwinds. This has forced managers to look to 2021 and further, notwithstanding distribution hurdles. Instead, more importantly, to plan an endgame to an earnings suppression. When news comes in bits and pieces, those tailwinds have an added lifespan in a market that now prices in news the second it hits the tape. Today, Pfizer and BioNTech said their Covid-19 vaccine is 95% effective and plan to file for an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). This sets it in line with Moderna’s results and the stocks have acted accordingly.

The resilient consumer is in the spotlight this week. Yesterday’s October retail sales data certainly underwhelmed and September’s read was revised lower. This weighed on solid earnings beats from Home Depot and Walmart. Target easily topped earnings estimates this morning with help from online sales. The stock is up nearly 3% premarket. However, Lowe’s fell shy of lofty expectations and the stock is down more than 6% premarket. Like Home Depot, increased spending from Lowe’s weighed on its overall report.

Building permits and housing starts were overall firm this morning. Chicago Fed President Charles Evans, a 2021 voter, spoke at 9:00 A.M. CT. European Central Bank (ECB) President Christine Lagarde also spoke at that time. U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) crude oil inventory data was due at 9:30 A.M. CT. New York Fed President John C. Williams, a permanent voting seat, also spoke at 11:15 A.M. CT and St. Louis Fed President James Bullard followed at 12:20 P.M. CT. Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic, a 2021 voter, speaks tonight at 6:00 P.M. CT. There was a 20-year bond auction at noon CT. Nvidia reports earnings after the bell.

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