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Monday Market Indexes Stay in Green on So-So Data

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The market started the day flat, stumbled into the new trading week, but then began gaining ground by mid-morning. The Dow posted is first day higher in the last 3 days — finishing +0.36% as of the closing bell. The S&P 500 went up likewise: +0.38%. The Nasdaq beat them both to register gains of 0.66% on the day. The Nasdaq is currently within 2% of its all-time high.

We got some OK data during the course of the day — nothing earth-shattering, and nothing too hot or too cold. Markit Manufacturing PMI posted a 39.8 for the month, exactly in-line with the previous month’s headline. ISM Manufacturing came in beneath expectations slightly — 43.1% from the 44.0% estimated — but an improvement over April’s headline figure of 41.5%.

Construction Spending for the month of April came in at -2.9%, lower than the March read of 0.0%, but better than the -6.8% analysts had been anticipating. Considering the deeply bleak economic indicators we’ve seen over the course of the past couple months, so-so data comes as welcome news.

The markets will continue to monitor and parse meaning from social unrest in the U.S., reopenings following the coronavirus lockdown period and a return to U.S.-China tensions. Tomorrow we get motor vehicle sales results throughout the day, and these numbers are not coming with many high expectations. Such is the burden of looking back into the heart of the pandemic for economic data.

In fact, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) this afternoon said it might take the U.S. economy a full decade to catch up to pre-COVID-19 levels. The CBO’s estimate was that the pandemic will have reduced real GDP by 3% — a whopping $7.9 trillion — from 2020 to 2030.

One notable stock in Monday trading is Pfizer (PFE - Free Report) which sold off 7% upon news that its phase 3 trial on its latest breast cancer candidate is “unlikely to meet its primary endpoint.” Shares have mostly trended between $35-40 per share, including this sell-off. The exception, of course, was the big crater in March, which took shares down to around $28.50 ten weeks ago. Prior to this news, Pfizer had carried a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) with a Value-Growth-Momentum grade of A.

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