U.S. stock-index futures pointed to a higher start for equities Tuesday, building on a record close for major benchmarks in the previous session.
What are major indexes doing?
Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average
rose 139 points, or 0.5%, to 30,444.
S&P 500 futures
were up 17.75 points, or 0.5%, at 3,745.25.
advanced 54.25 points, or 0.4%, to 12,887.
Stocks rallied Monday to kick off the final, holiday-shortened trading week of 2020, with the Dow
and Nasdaq Composite
all ending at records. Markets will be closed Friday for the New Year’s Day holiday.
What’s driving the market?
Stocks remained in rally mode, set to end a roller-coaster year with significant gains, shaking off a historic bear-market plunge in February and March as the Covid-19 pandemic brought a global economic slump.
“After a tumultuous year, stocks look almost certain to end 2020 on a high as there is no sign that the global flood of fiscal and monetary stimulus is about to be scaled back,” said Raffi Boyadjian, senior investment analyst at XM, in a note. “And with vaccine rollouts gathering pace, it is easy for investors to look past the daily grim headlines of record COVID infections and deaths.”
On Monday equities rallied after President Donald Trump signed legislation late Sunday providing $900 billion in aid to individuals and businesses and $1.4 trillion to fund government agencies. Trump last week blindsided lawmakers from both parties by criticizing the legislation, which his administration had helped negotiate, and insisting that checks to be paid to households be raised from $600 to $2,000.
The Democratic-controlled House on Monday approved legislation that would increase the payments to $2,000, but the proposal faces an uncertain future in the Republican-controlled Senate.
Analysts warned that trading could prove volatile this week due to typically light end-of-year volume. Markets will be closed Friday for the New Year’s Day holiday.
The U.S. counted at least 188,934 new Covid-19 cases on Monday, and at least 1,899 people died, according to a New York Times tracker. In the last week, the U.S. has averaged 183,124 cases a day, down 13% from the average two weeks ago, but health experts have warned of a potential surge in cases following heavy travel for Christmas.
The U.S. economic calendar includes advance data on November trade in goods at 8:30 a.m. Eastern. The Chicago-area purchasing managers index for December is due at 9:45 a.m., while November pending-home sales data is set for release at 10 a.m.