Stocks jump after Moderna releases promising vaccine trial results

UniqueThis 31 Nov 16


Stock markets jumped higher on Monday on news that a second coronavirus vaccine showed promise, bolstering hopes even as new infections surged around the world.

Pharmaceutical company Moderna said its vaccine appears to be 94.5% effective, according to preliminary data. Markets rallied as they did when Pfizer and BioNTech said earlier this month that their vaccine is 90% effective against the virus.

The S&P 500 gained 27 points, or 0.8%, to 3,612 as the broad-based index carried its momentum from last week to push deeper into record terrain. The Dow jumped 413 points, or 1.4%, and is near a record high while the tech-heavy Nasdaq rose 0.4%.

COVID-19 case surge threatens the U.S. econom... 02:14

Dr. Stephen Hoge, Moderna's president, welcomed the "really important milestone" but said having similar results from two different companies is what's most reassuring.

"That should give us all hope that actually a vaccine is going to be able to stop this pandemic and hopefully get us back to our lives," Hoge told The Associated Press.

Both the Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines are expected to get emergency approval from the Food and Drug Administration "in the coming weeks," according to Bank of America analysts. 

Yet while Moderna's announcement offers hope that a vaccine could arrive soon, "additional data such as extended safety, durability, transmission rates and decreased hospitalizations are key data points still missing," the analysts said in a report. 

The head of the World Health Organization also said Monday that a vaccine would not by itself stop the coronavirus pandemic. "A vaccine will complement the other tools we have, not replace them," director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said. "A vaccine on its own will not end the pandemic."

Pact forms world's biggest trading bloc

Markets were also boosted as investors welcomed the signing on Sunday of an agreement establishing the world's biggest trade bloc, a group of 15 countries that includes China, Japan, South Korea, 10 countries in Southeast Asia, New Zealand and Australia. The United States, the No. 1 economy, is not a part of it.

1 million new COVID cases in U.S. last week 07:11

Called the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, the pact mostly will bring already low tariffs lower over a 20-year period. It is expected to have a positive but incremental impact on trade in the region.

"The fact that the agreement got over the line after eight years of negotiation between a widely disparate group of nations is an achievement in itself," Jeffrey Halley of Oanda said in a commentary. 

First published on November 16, 2020 / 10:43 AM

© 2020 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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