S&P 500 falls as Tesla drops 6% in debut

A sign for Wall Street hangs outside at the New York Stock Exchange on April 20. Stocks were down Friday morning ahead of President Donald Trump's news conference on China. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI

Dec. 21 (UPI) — The S&P 500 dropped on Monday as Tesla’s stock plummeted upon debuting on the index and markets responded to news of a new strain of COVID-19.

The equity index fell 0.39% to end the day after falling to a session low of nearly 2% earlier in the day. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.10%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the day up 37.40 points, or 0.12%.

Tesla stock declined 6.49% in the electric car maker’s first day of trading on the S&P 500.

Monday’s decline came as the company’s shares were up 687% on the year and rose $39.10, or 6%, to a closing record at $695.

Tesla entered the S&P 500 with a 1.7% weighting, causing the broader S&P 500 to fluctuate one point for every $11.11 it moves.

Travel stocks fell as Britain entered its highest level of lockdown and other European nations banned travel from the country after the presence of a new strain of COVID-19 was reported over the weekend.

American Airlines stock fell 2.48% and United Airlines dropped 1.53%, while Norwegian Cruise Line declined 1.59% and Royal Caribbean slid 0.65%.

he Dow avoided losses Monday as Nike rose 4.91% following strong earnings, while Goldman Sachs gained 6.07% and JPMorgan Chase grew 3.75% as the Federal Reserve announced share buybacks for banks would continue into the first quarter of 2021.

Markets also responded positively to Congress announcing plans to vote on a $900 billion coronavirus relief bill and a government funding measure in a deal reached over the weekend.

The package includes $600 individual stimulus payments which Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told CNBC would be sent out as soon as next week.

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