The Australian stock market is extending its winning streak on Tuesday after U.S. stocks hit record intraday highs overnight following upbeat results from a late-stage study of a coronavirus vaccine being developed by Pfizer and BioNTech. The vaccine news boosted optimism about a global economic recovery.
The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index is advancing 97.40 points or 1.55 percent to 6,396.20, after touching a high of 6,438.20 earlier. The broader All Ordinaries Index is adding 84.10 points or 1.29 percent to 6,599.80. Australian stocks hit an eight-month high on Monday.
Oil stocks are surging after crude oil prices jumped overnight. Oil Search is gaining more than 14 percent, Santos is climbing more than 11 percent and Woodside Petroleum is higher by almost 7 percent.
Among the big four banks, National Australia Bank, ANZ Banking and Westpac are sharply higher in a range of 6.1 percent to 7.5 percent. Commonwealth Bank is rising more than 3 percent.
Among the major miners, BHP Group is advancing more than 1 percent, while Rio Tinto and Fortescue Metals are edging down 0.1 percent each.
Meanwhile, gold miners are sharply lower after gold prices recorded the steepest slide in over seven years overnight. Evolution Mining is falling more than 10 percent and Newcrest Mining is tumbling more than 5 percent.
Tech stocks followed their U.S. peers lower. Afterpay is losing 7 percent, Appen is tumbling more than 6 percent and WiseTech Global is declining almost 2 percent.
On Wall Street, stocks pulled back off record highs after skyrocketing early in the session on Monday following upbeat results from a phase 3 study of the coronavirus vaccine being developed by Pfizer and BioNTech. Pfizer and BioNTech said an interim analysis of the results found the vaccine candidate to be more than 90 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 in participants without evidence of prior infection. The vaccine news added to positive sentiment generated in reaction to the weekend’s news that Democratic candidate Joe Biden’s is projected to win the presidential election.
The Dow soared by more than 1,600 points in early trading to reach a new record intraday high before ending the session up 834.57 points or 3 percent at 29,157.97, its highest closing level in well over eight months. The S&P 500 jumped 41.06 points or 1.2 percent to 3,550.50, while the Nasdaq slumped 41.06 points or 1.2 percent to 3,550.50, as traders moved money out of tech stocks that benefited from the coronavirus pandemic.
The major European markets also skyrocketed on Monday. While the French CAC 40 Index soared by 7.6 percent, the German DAX Index and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index spiked by 4.9 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively.
Crude oil prices rose sharply on Monday as positive news about a potential coronavirus vaccine somewhat outweighed reports showing spikes in new infections. WTI crude for December delivery jumped $3.15 or about 8.5 percent to $40.29 a barrel.
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