The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded above 30,000 points for the first time Tuesday as investors were encouraged by the latest progress on developing coronavirus vaccines and news that the transition of power in the U.S. to President-elect Joe Biden will finally begin.
Traders were also encouraged by news that Biden had selected Janet Yellen, a widely respected former Federal Reserve chair, as treasury secretary. The Dow rose more than 400 points, or 1.4%, to trade just over 30,000 at midday Tuesday. The S&P 500 index, which has a far greater impact on 401(k) accounts than the Dow, rose 1.3%.
The gains extend a month-long market rally driven by growing optimism that development of coronavirus vaccines and treatments will loosen the pandemic's stranglehold on the economy. They also mark a rapid climb for the Dow from its March 23 low of just under 18,600 during the worst of its early pandemic nosedive.
The Dow jumped 440 points, or 1.5%, to 30,032 as of 11:38 a.m. Eastern time. Boeing, which brings a heavy weight to the Dow, rose 3.8%. The technology-heavy Nasdaq composite was up 1%.
Traders are favoring stocks that stand to gain the most from a gradual reopening of the economy, such as banks and industrial companies. Overseas markets also rose. Treasury yields and oil prices were headed higher.
On Monday, the head of the federal General Services Administration acknowledged that Biden is the apparent winner of this month's presidential election. That allows the incoming president to coordinate with federal agencies on plans for taking over on Jan. 20, despite ongoing efforts by President Donald Trump to overturn the election.
This is a breaking news report — read more in Wednesday's Butler Eagle.