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US: Stocks end mixed as more states restart economic activity
[NEW YORK] Wall Street stocks finished mixed on Monday as markets weigh hopes about reopening the economy against worries over coronavirus cases and the damage already inflicted by the shutdowns.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended down 0.5 per cent at 24,221.99.
The tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 0.8 per cent to 9,192.34, while the broad-based S&P 500 ended essentially flat at 2,930.19.
Most US states have moved to reopen parts of their economy even as the national death toll approaches 80,000.
The trends have improved significantly in New York city and some other hotpots, but the record elsewhere in the United States is mixed.
There is expected to be some increase in Covid-19 cases in Georgia, Texas and other states that have moved more quickly to resume activity, but officials hope any increase will be manageable and will not require restrictions to be revived.
"Investors continue to look past the current state of the economy and toward the prospects of activity resuming," said TD Ameritrade Institutional's trading specialist Mike Turvey.
This week's economic calendar includes a speech by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell expected to update investors on stimulus programs.
Economic reports include data on consumer prices and retail sales, as well as another weekly report on jobless claims. Initial claims have spiked in unprecedented fashion over the last two months after hotels, shops and businesses were shuttered nationwide, although the pace has slowed from the peak.
Among individual companies, Marriott International fell 5.6 per cent as it reported quarterly profits plunged more than 90 per cent to US$31 million on the devastating effect of pandemic shutdowns on travel.
On the positive side, Marriott said occupancy in Greater China had reached 25 per cent in April, up from 10 per cent in February.
Athletic wear manufacturer Under Armour slumped 10.5 per cent as it reported a loss of US$590 million in the first quarter, saying solid results in the first two months of the period gave way to a major slowdown in March when Covid-19 restrictions curtailed sales.