The U.S. stock market surged to record highs Monday as investors showed optimism that there is an end to the coronavirus pandemic in sight following positive vaccine news from pharmaceutical company Moderna.
Both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 indices closed Monday afternoon at record highs after rallying throughout the day, according to CNBC.
The Dow rose 1.6% to 471 points while the S&P 500 rose 1.2% to just below 30,000 points, CNN reported. Airline, cruise and bank stocks all jumped as sectors that would be most positively affected from an end to the pandemic.
Moderna announced early Monday that its vaccine was 94.5% effective in combating the novel coronavirus during large-scale human trials.
“This positive interim analysis from our Phase 3 study has given us the first clinical validation that our vaccine can prevent COVID-19 disease, including severe disease,” said Moderna CEO Stéphane Bancel in a press release. (RELATED: Moderna’s Coronavirus Vaccine Is Nearly 95% Effective, Company Announces)
The company also reported that its vaccine can survive in refrigerated temperatures for up to 30 days, according to a separate announcement Monday.
The vaccine’s ability to survive longer “would enable simpler distribution and more flexibility to facilitate wider-scale vaccination in the United States and other parts of the world,” Moderna Chief Technical Operations and Quality Officer Juan Andres said.
The positive news Monday comes one week after Pfizer announced that its coronavirus vaccine candidate was more than 90% effective during its large-scale trial. Markets also rallied in response to Pfizer’s Nov. 9 announcement, according to The New York Times.
Average coronavirus cases and deaths per million have been increasing rapidly since mid-October, according to The COVID Tracking Project. On Sunday, the U.S. reported 672 new coronavirus-related deaths and 145,670 new cases while 69,987 Americans remained hospitalized from the virus.
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