Get the latest market trends in your inbox

Stay on top of the latest market trends and economic insights with the Axios Markets newsletter. Sign up for free.

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Catch up on coronavirus stories and special reports, curated by Mike Allen everyday

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Denver news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Denver

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Des Moines news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Des Moines

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Minneapolis-St. Paul news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Minneapolis-St. Paul

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Tampa-St. Petersburg news in your inbox

Catch up on the most important stories affecting your hometown with Axios Tampa-St. Petersburg

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Please enter a valid email.

Please enter a valid email.

Subscription failed
Thank you for subscribing!

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Here’s one thing Wall Street investors can say that other Americans can’t: Things are looking really good.

Why it matters: The backdrop is the worst rate of coronavirus infections since the pandemic began. But that’s no match for a prospective vaccine down the line, which adds to already favorable conditions for investors.

  • "Yes, new cases and hospitalizations are soaring, but we are inching closer to ending this pandemic," says Ryan Detrick, chief market strategist at LPL Financial.

What’s going on: Investors continued to pile into most risk assets on Monday, following early trial data showing Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine was 94.5% effective.

  • Stocks closed at all-time highs. The Dow cinched a new record for the first time since the pandemic hit. (It’s also closing in on the 30,000 mark.)
  • Notably, "stay-at-home" companies didn’t broadly sell off like last week when Pfizer released early vaccine trial results, with companies like Peloton rising yesterday. Some Big Tech stocks also rose.
  • Oil prices jumped 3%.

Meanwhile, the yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note jumped to 0.91% from 0.89% on Friday. (It jumped more than 10 basis points after the Pfizer news last week).

The good news about vaccine progress adds to the better-than-expected developments that have emerged for Wall Street and corporate America during an unprecedented pandemic. Among them:

  • Corporate profits that have surprised to the upside.
  • Companies confident enough to resume buybacks and dividend payments. (Costco on Monday said it would pay out a special cash dividend this year.)
  • Interest rates that will be lower for longer.

Between the lines: The Fed’s ongoing response to the pandemic has played a massive role in buoying investors.

  • What to watch: Wall Street is increasingly betting the Fed will make changes to its bond buying program as soon as its next meeting. Fed officials aren’t exactly swatting off that notion.
  • What they’re saying: "The Federal Reserve is committed to using all of our available tools — not just the federal-funds rate and forward guidance, but also large-scale asset purchases — to achieve our dual-mandate goals," Fed vice chair Richard Clarida said in a speech on Monday.

The bottom line: "Our glass half-full outlook is bolstered by benign inflation, low interest rates, improving growth trends of earnings, ongoing monetary and fiscal stimulus policies, and medical progress for COVID-19," analysts at U.S. Bank wrote in a note to clients.

Go deeper

14 hours ago - Health

CDC panel: COVID vaccines should go to health workers, long-term care residents first

Hospital staff work in the COVID-19 intensive care unit in Houston. Photo: Go Nakamura via Getty

Health-care workers and nursing home residents should be at the front of the line to get coronavirus vaccines in the United States once they’re cleared and available for public use, an independent CDC panel recommended in a 13-1 emergency vote on Tuesday, per CNBC.

Why it matters: Recent developments in COVID-19 vaccines have accelerated the timeline for distribution as vaccines developed by Pfizer and Moderna undergo the federal approval process. States are preparing to begin distributing as soon as two weeks from now.

Updated 20 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus may have been in U.S. in December 2019, study finds — Hospital crisis deepens as holiday season nears.
  2. Politics: Bipartisan group of senators unveil $908 billion COVID stimulus proposalFDA chief was called to West Wing to explain why agency hasn't moved faster on vaccine — The words that actually persuade people on the pandemic
  3. Vaccine: Moderna to file for FDA emergency use authorizationVaccinating rural America won't be easy — Being last in the vaccine queue is young people's next big COVID test.
  4. States: Cuomo orders emergency hospital protocols as New York's COVID capacity dwindles.
  5. World: European regulators to assess first COVID-19 vaccine by Dec. 29
  6. 🎧 Podcast: The state of play of the top vaccines.

Bipartisan group of lawmakers unveils $908 billion COVID stimulus proposal

Sens. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) and Susan Collins (R-Maine) in the Capitol in 2018. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call

A bipartisan group of lawmakers on Tuesday proposed a $908 billion coronavirus stimulus package, in one of the few concrete steps toward COVID relief made by Congress in several months.

Why it matters: Recent data shows that the economic recovery is floundering as coronavirus cases surge and hospitals threaten to be overwhelmed heading into what is likely to be a grim winter.