Nasdaq grabs new record as stocks post weekly gains

Apple, Amazon and Netflix hit fresh records

U.S. equity markets rallied Friday, powered again by large-cap tech and positive developments in the race for a coronavirus vaccine after a study found an experimental treatment reduced death in patients.

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The Nasdaq Composite, which pulled down its third straight record this week, was lifted by fresh highs in Apple, Amazon and Netflix.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
I:COMPNASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX10913.561787+241.30+2.26%
AAPLAPPLE INC.112.28+4.06+3.75%
AMZNAMAZON.COM INC.3,095.13+75.34+2.49%
NFLXNETFLIX INC.482.88+9.80+2.07%

Meanwhile, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 369.07 points or 1.44 percent, while the S&P 500 added 1.05 percent.

For the week, all three major averages registered gains.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
I:DJIDOW JONES AVERAGES27173.96+358.52+1.34%
SP500S&P 5003298.46+51.87+1.60%

In healthcare stocks, a Phase 3 study found Gilead Sciences Inc.'s experimental treatment remdesivir was associated with a 62 percent reduction in the risk of death in COVID-19 patients.

On the same front, BioNTech CEO Dr. Ugur Sahin told The Wall Street Journal his company’s experimental COVID-19 vaccine, being developed with Pfizer Inc., will be ready for regulatory approval by the end of the year.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
GILDGILEAD SCIENCES INC.62.250.000.00%
BNTXBIONTECH66.69+3.86+6.14%
PFEPFIZER INC.36.05+0.29+0.81%

In the auto sector, Tesla crossed the $1,500 level for the first time as speculators looked ahead to earnings season and the potential for another profitable quarter from the Elon Musk-led auto company.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
TSLATESLA INC.407.34+19.55+5.04%

Elsewhere, Ford Motor Co. warned it may have to close U.S. plants as engine production based in Mexico has slowed due to disruptions from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Carnival Corp. lost $4.37 billion in the second quarter as COVID-19 kept ships docked and caused an 85 percent plunge in sales.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
FFORD MOTOR COMPANY6.51-0.15-2.25%
CCLCARNIVAL CORP.15.07+1.33+9.68%

Oil majors ExxonMobil Corp., Chevron Corp. and Royal Dutch Shell Plc were on the move after the International Energy Agency raised its global oil demand forecast for the rest of the year to 92.1 million barrels per day, up 40,000 barrels, but warned the COVID-19 pandemic remains a risk.

TickerSecurityLastChangeChange %
XOMEXXON MOBIL CORPORATION34.65+0.34+0.98%
CVXCHEVRON CORP.71.83+0.03+0.04%
RDS.AROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLC25.74-0.80-3.01%

Meanwhile, West Texas Intermediate crude oil ended the week at $40.55 a barrel while gold slipped to $1,798.20 an ounce.

U.S. Treasurys were little changed with the yield on the 10-year note holding near 0.633 percent.

In Europe, Germany’s DAX was trading higher by 1.15 percent while Britain’s FTSE and France’s CAC were up 0.76 percent and 1.01 percent, respectively.

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Asian markets were lower across the board, with China’s Shanghai Composite pacing the decline, down 1.95 percent, after a report said a state fund was selling stocks. Meanwhile, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng slid 1.84 percent and Japan’s Nikkei lost 1.06 percent.