S&P 500 notches new record; travel stocks dip after J&J vaccine recommendation

The S&P 500 hit a closing high of 4,141.59 in a mixed day of trading on Tuesday, as U.S. health agencies recommended pausing the rollout of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. File Photo by John Angelillo/UPI

April 13 (UPI) — The S&P 500 barely notched a record high in a mixed day of trading Tuesday as recommendations to halt the Johnson & Johnson vaccine rollout were offset by a positive report on inflation.

The S&P gained 0.33% to reach a new closing high of 4,141.59, while the Nasdaq Composite gained 1.05%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 68.13 points or 0.2%.

Dow component Johnson & Johnson fell 1.34% after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Food and Drug Administration recommended an immediate pause in the use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine after six women reported blood clotting issues.

Shares of Moderna, which is also manufacturing a COVID-19 vaccine rose 7.4%.

News of the pause led to declines in companies that would benefit from the widespread lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, as Alaska Air fell 1.7%, American Airlines dropped 1.5% and rental-car company Avis declined 0.98%.

“I don’t think there’s going to be a huge reaction in the market beyond the knee-jerk reaction we’re getting here right now,” Mike Wilson, chief U.S. equity strategist for Morgan Stanley, told CNBC.

Markets also responded to a report on consumer price inflation as the consumer price index from the Bureau of Labor Statistics rose 0.6% in March and 2.6% from the previous year, more quickly than the anticipated 2.5% rise.

The increase was less notable when excluding food and energy prices, which are considered volatile, with core consumer prices rising 1.6% after a 1.3% gain in February.

“We’ve still got a lot of fuel in the tank as far as the economy is concerned,” James Bruderman, 1879 Advisors vice chairman, told Yahoo Finance.

“We’re still poised, I think, in the early stages of the recovery, maybe getting a little bit into the growth stage. But I think we’ve got a lot of runway — especially with all the stimulus that’s yet to be spent — to let earnings continue to support and maybe even provide some more upside.”


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