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Stock Market News for Feb 10, 2021

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Wall Street closed mixed on Tuesday as investors booked profits while remained focused on the potential for another round of government-led coronavirus relief package. The Dow and the S&P 500 ended in red while the Nasdaq Composite finished at a record high.

How Did The Benchmarks Perform?

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) fell marginally to close at 31,375.83. Notably, 11 components of the 30-stock index ended in the green while 18 in red and one remained unchanged. The blue-chip index has terminated its six-day winning streak.

The Nasdaq Composite finished at 14,007.70, rising 0.1% due to strong performance by large-cap tech stocks. This was the tech-heavy index's tenth record closing this year. During intraday trading, the tech-laden index recorded an all-time high at 14,044.95. This is the first time the index touched and closed above 14,000.

The major gainer of Nasdaq Composite was NetEase Inc. (NTES - Free Report) that rallied 6.7%. NetEase carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Meanwhile, the S&P 500 lost 0.1% to end at 3,911.23, marking the end of a six-day winning run. The Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE), the Materials Select Sector SPDR (XLB) and the Consumer Discretionary  Services Select Sector SPDR (XLY) dropped 1.1%,0.7% and 0.6%, respectively. Notably, five out of eleven sectors of the benchmark index closed in the red and six in green.

The fear-gauge CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) was up 1.8% to 21.63. A total of 15.1 billion shares were traded on Tuesday, lower than the last 20-session average of 15.5 billion. Advancers outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by a 1.54-to-1 ratio. On Nasdaq, a 1.45-to-1 ratio favored advancing issues.

Expectations of Large Fiscal Stimulus

Congressional Democrats have moved forward to initiate voting in both the Senate and the House of Representatives without Republican support through a process called budget reconciliation in order to make President Joe Biden's proposed $1.9 trillion coronavirus-aid package a law. The House Ways and Means Committee said individuals who earn up to $75,000 and couples filing jointly with earnings up to $150,000 will get $1,400 direct payment.

Moderate job growth in January clearly indicates that the U.S. economy is still suffering from coronavirus-led devastations and full recovery will take a long time. Consequently, investors' expectations have strengthened that the Congress will clear the path of President Biden's proposed $1.9 trillion coronavirus-aid package in a law.

Reduction in New COVID-19 Infections

Per COVID Tracking Project, new coronavirus cases in the United States averaged 111,190 a day in the past week, down 36% from the average two weeks ago. As of Feb 7, there were hospitalization of 80,055 COVID-19 patients, down from 81,439 a day earlier and the lowest level since Nov 18.

Meanwhile, the U.S. government has ramped up nationwide COVID-19 vaccine deployment. As of Feb 8, at least 32,780,860 doses administered. New cases of infections have also declined on average. Notably, the Biden administration has targeted to administer at least 100 million doses of vaccine during its first 100 days in office.

Economic Data

The National Federation of Independent Business reported that its small-business optimization index came in at 95 in January dropping from 95.9 in December. This was the index's lowest level since the beginning of the pandemic. Moreover, the percentage of small-business owners who expect conditions to improve in the next six months declined to a seven-year low.

Per the U.S. government’s job openings and labor turnover survey, hiring decreased by nearly 400,000 in December to 5.5 million. However, job openings rose marginally to 6.65 million in December from 6.57 million in November.

Stocks That Have Made Headline

LYFT Pops on Narrower-Than-Expected Q4 Loss & Revenue Beat

Lyft Inc. (LYFT - Free Report) incurred a loss (excluding 85 cents from non-recurring items) of 58 cents per share in the fourth quarter of 2020, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 71 cents. (Read More)

Helmerich & Payne Incurs Wider-Than-Expected Q1 Loss

Helmerich & Payne Inc. (HP - Free Report) reported fiscal first-quarter 2021 adjusted loss of 82 cents per share, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 78 cents. (Read More)

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