The potential for a vaccine and a bailout breathed some life into the market.
At the opening bell of trading this morning, the Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped up 2.9%, a boost of nearly 700 points. Similarly, the S&P 500 picked up 2.4%, while the Nasdaq gained 1.8%. These are promising boosts to a stock market that has been beset by drops and worrying predictions in recent weeks due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. There are several factors to the jump, but one of the major contributing elements is early success in vaccine research.
American biotech company Moderna reported this morning that their early-stage human trials for a COVID-19 vaccine have produced some promising results. In a test group of 45 participants divided into groups of 15, participants received a 25, 100, or 250 microgram dose of the experimental vaccine. After two doses over the course of 43 days, participants in the 25 microgram group showed approximately the same amount of binding antibodies as someone who recovered from COVID-19, while the 100 microgram group showed antibody levels that, in Moderna’s words, “significantly exceeded levels” in recovered patients. The data on the 250 microgram group was not yet available. Additionally, eight participants, four from the 25 group and four from the 100 group, developed neutralizing antibodies that could fight off COVID-19 completely. While this data is still very early, it is definitely promising, which is why, when Moderna reported their results, their stock values jumped 30%.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell has also floated the idea of more bailouts for the American economy while the pandemic is still going on, which was another major contributing factor to this morning’s rises.