Stocks rallied Monday, with all major indices snapping back into positive territories as investors seized on any positive developments in the fight to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
The stock market is, of course, not the economy. And this is likely a dead-cat bounce — a temporary recovery after a big fall. The question is how many dead-cat bounces will we see in the coming weeks?
And while the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic is continuing, that didn’t stop investors from grasping at data from John Hopkins University that suggests the number of new COVID-19 cases is slowing. The institution’s coronavirus map, which has become a go-to source, showed 25,200 new cases rising on March 31, then rising to 33,300 new cases by April 3. Those numbers dropped to 28,200 new cases April 4, per its data; other trackers have posted slightly different results.
Today’s rally will be tested in the days and weeks to come as COVID-19 cases continue and eventually hit a peak before plateauing. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a member of the White House coronavirus task force, has warned that cases, and deaths, will likely surge in the next week.
Here are the day’s results:
- Dow Jones Industrial Average: up 7.59%, or 1,597.21 points, to close at 22.649.74
- S&P 500: rose 6.95%, or 172.86 points, to close at 2,661.51
- Nasdaq composite: popped 7.33%, or 540.15 points, to close at 7,913.24
There were other indirect COVID-19 fundamentals, such as new sales guidance or analyst notes that also moved certain stocks.
E-commerce stocks, including eBay and Amazon, saw positive movement. Online retailer Wayfair was perhaps the biggest mover in this category. The company’s shares opened 36% higher after reporting its gross revenue growth rate more than doubled at the end of March. Wayfair shares closed up 41.7% to $71.50.
Music streaming company Spotify saw shares decline more than 4% after Raymond James downgraded the stock from “strong buy” to “market perform,” citing that COVID-19 was causing less engagement and fewer downloads as users spend more time indoors. Spotify shares did manage to bounce back during the day and ended closing up nearly 0.33%, to $122.52.
Shares of SaaS companies rallied on the day as well, with the Bessemer cloud index rising 6.79% on the day; shares of SaaS companies, modern software firms, have enjoyed strong revenue multiples in recent years. They have tracked the broader indices down, however, and remain in bear-market territory.
Looking ahead, we’re entering earnings season during a period of intense economic uncertainty; how the stock market performs in the future will at least partially depend on how companies performed in Q1 2020, and what they project for the future. Get ready.