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Stocks Rally Ahead of Tech Reports; Bezos Set to Step Down as Amazon CEO

Stocks end higher as hopes grow for more U.S. stimulus and investors look ahead to tech earnings. Jeff Bezos is stepping down as Amazon CEO.

Stocks finished sharply higher Tuesday as hopes grew for more U.S. stimulus, progress was made on vaccinations and investors looked ahead to earnings from tech giants  (AMZN)  and Alphabet  (GOOGL) .

Amazon said Jeff Bezos would step down as CEO in the third quarter and become executive chairman. Andy Jassy, who leads Amazon Web Services, will succeed Bezos as CEO of the Seattle tech and online-retail giant.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 475 points, or 1.57%, to close at 30,687, the S&P 500 rose 1.39% and the Nasdaq jumped 1.56%.

Shares of GameStop  (GME)  slumped Tuesday and silver pulled back from an eight-year high as the frenzied retail trading that has gripped the markets over the past two weeks appeared to be fading.

GameStop, AMC and Silver Fall as Reddit-Fueled Frenzy Fizzles

President Joe Biden held what was described as a productive meeting with 10 moderate Republican senators to discuss stimulus options. The president is pushing for a coronavirus relief package of $1.9 trillion, while Republicans have countered with an offer of $600 billion.

The White House said Tuesday that Biden's plan remains at $1.9 trillion even after his meeting with GOP senators.

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On the virus front, more Americans have received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine than have tested positive for the virus.

According to Bloomberg, 26.5 million Americans had received one or both doses of the current vaccines, while 26.3 million people have tested positive for covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

More than 445,000 people in the U.S. have died from the virus, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

GameStop finished down 60% at $90 on Tuesday. Earlier in the session the stock was halted for volatility after falling more than 60%. 

The videogame retailer and other heavily shorted names, such as AMC Entertainment  (AMC)  and Koss Corp.  (KOSS) , have seen manic gains in recent weeks, fueled largely by online communities such as Reddit’s WallStreetBets forum.

Silver prices fell Tuesday after the Chicago Mercantile Exchange lifted margin requirements.

United Parcel Service  (UPS)  posted a $3.3 billion fourth-quarter loss but adjusted earnings were well above Wall Street forecasts as the pandemic continued to drive consumers and businesses to rely on Big Brown, particularly during the holidays.

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