March is coming in like a lion on Wall Street.
The Dow surged more than 600 points on Monday and the S&P 500 had its best day since June as last week’s jitters over the bond market cooled and investors grew increasingly optimistic about fiscal stimulus and coronavirus vaccinations.
After a week marred by growing fears of rising interest rates that sparked a surprise spike in Treasury bond yields and sent stocks plummeting, the bond market cooled off Monday with the benchmark 10-year rate falling well back from a one-year high of just over 1.6 percent.
“The sentiment is risk on with more investors showing interest towards cyclical stocks while a positive vaccination drive and better macro numbers are hinting towards a better growth environment,” said Keith Buchanan, portfolio manager at GLOBALT in Atlanta.
The S&P jumped 90 points, or 2.4 percent, to 3,901.82, erasing nearly all of last week’s losses. The Dow Jones industrial average popped more than 700 points, or 2.3 percent, before settling to close at 31,535.51, up 603.14 points or 2 percent. The Nasdaq, which had an especially rough end to February as tech shares got hammered, soared 396 points, or 3 percent.
On the vaccination front, US government officials now say that 15 percent of the population has received at least one shot of a COVID vaccine, a vertiginous rise in only a matter of weeks.
Shares of Johnson & Johnson jumped almost 2 percent in early trading after the company received approval for emergency use of its one-shot COVID vaccine on Sunday.
So-called “reopening trades” like cruise like Carnival and American Airlines climbed 4.5 percent and 5 percent, respectively, before the former gave up its gains to go negative in the afternoon session.
One asset that is holding onto a big day is Bitcoin.
After leaping more than 9 percent Monday morning and getting back to a price of $49,410, the king of crypto is holding onto most of its gains, recently up 6.3 percent at $48,149 after a Citi research report found that Bitcoin is at a “tipping point” to reach mainstream acceptance and could “become the currency of choice for international trade.”
Bitcoin likewise got a boost on reports that Goldman Sachs has reopened its crypto desk after shuttering it in 2018 after an earlier crypto bubble burst.