Stocks Inch Higher as States Halt Reopenings

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Stocks rose slightly, even as the virus and lockdown situation looked unfortunate.

The tech-heavy Nassdaq fell abut 0.2%, serving as a drag on the S&P 500, which rose a bit more than 0.2%. That was before the Nasdaq sold off, falling 0.7%, dragging the S&P into the red slightly. The 10-Year treasury yield was pressured and flat at 0.65%. Yields fall when prices rise. This signals some risk aversion in a market that was largely feeling positive Monday. 

Negatively, 12 states are pausing reopening plans, including Texas, Florida and California as the 5-day moving average of new coronavirus cases is 38,000, down from the 45,000 seen days ago but up from early June’s 17,000, according to data from Johns Hopkins. The last time before June the average went above 30,000 was April. 

The S&P 500 fell almost 3% last week, but a combination of potentially more fiscal stimulus and slightly better valuations could equal some dip-buying in the U.S. stock market. 

Shares of Facebook  (FB) - Get Report and Twitter  (TWTR) - Get Report fell more than 2% as some large brands said they will pull ads back on their platforms because of offensive content. That weighed on tech indices and ETFs. Google  (GOOGL) - Get Report fell 0.5%. 

But cyclical sentiment was mostly strong. Oil stocks were up about 0.5%. The invest KBW bank ETF  (KBWB) - Get Report rose 1.4%. Consumer discretionary stocks rose a bit as well. 

As for crude oil, which rose by a few tenth of a percentage point to almost $39 a barrel, some say Chesapeake Energy’s  (CHK) - Get Report bankruptcy filing is a positive. The company was a major driller that contributed to the global pressuring of oil prices in the past several years. That would take some supply out of the equation. The stock fell 7%.  

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