Dow Finishes Up 1,600, or 7.7%, on Signs Coronavirus Pandemic Is Slowing

Stocks finish higher as data show reported cases of the coronavirus slowing across the globe.
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Stocks ended solidly higher Monday as data showed reported cases of the coronavirus slowed across the globe over the weekend.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 1,627 points, or 7.73%, to 22,679, the S&P 500 jumped 7.03% and the Nasdaq Composite rose 7.3%.

Boeing  (BA) - Get Report, American Express  (AXP) - Get Report, and Visa  (V) - Get Report led the Dow's advance.

In New York, the epicenter of the outbreak in the U.S., deaths fell for the second day in a row and many hard-hit European countries also saw their tallies decrease.

“Hundreds of people are passing away each day from the pandemic, but less so than previous days, giving markets hope that the lockdown measures are finally starting to prove effective,” said Jeffrey Halley of Oanda.

“Like the rest of the world, financial markets are searching for any slivers of hope,” he said.

President Donald Trump warned over the weekend the coming week would be "one of the toughest weeks" of the outbreak.

The death toll from the coronavirus in the U.S. passed 10,000.

Stocks rebounded from Friday's sharp declines, which came after U.S. employers cut 701,000 staff in March, the first drop in employment since 2010.

The number of confirmed global cases of the coronavirus has risen to 1,324,907, according to the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering, and deaths increased to 73,703.

The U.S. has 352,546 cases of the coronavirus, the most in the world, according to Johns Hopkins CSSE. Deaths in the U.S. have risen to 10,516, behind Italy and Spain.

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday that 599 New Yorkers had died since Sunday, when the state recorded 594 virus-related deaths.

Citing that data from New York, Vice President Mike Pence said he and Trump were beginning to see signs that the virus outbreak was leveling off.

“We are beginning to see the glimmers of progress,” Pence said at a White House news conference on Sunday. “The experts will tell me not to jump to any conclusions, and I’m not, but like your president I’m an optimistic person and I’m hopeful.”

“We are still optimistic that the administration will be able to get this virus under control and reopen the economy by the end of April, early May,” Lindsey Piegza, chief economist at Stifel Nicolaus, told Bloomberg.

“If that does occur, it’s likely that we’re able to control the downturn from a depressionary scenario into a recessionary scenario.”

Global oil prices retreated Monday as OPEC leaders delayed an emergency meeting on production cuts in order to allow Russia and Saudi Arabia more time to reach a deal that could stabilize markets and satisfy Trump.

The president prodded the world's two biggest producers last week with a tweet that suggested the pair would make massive cuts to their daily production totals to boost prices.

Officials from Moscow and Riyadh, however, have yet to reach terms of any production cuts, and are struggling to find common ground. The impasse follows the collapse of a three-year output limit agreement among OPEC members and their allies last month in Vienna.