Stocks drop as new strain of coronavirus threatens Britain

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Inventories fell sharply on Monday after the discovery of a new strain of coronavirus spreading rapidly across Britain and key US lawmakers struck a $ 900 billion aid deal.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were trading down 312 points, or -1.04%, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite were 1.21% and 1.05% lower, respectively.

The recently discovered COVID-19 strain, which may be up to 70% more transmissible than the original, has prompted UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to impose tighter lockdowns.

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This given that the House and Senate were due to vote on a $ 900 billion stimulus package that would provide direct payments of $ 600 to individuals, extended unemployment benefits and additional wage protection loans for small businesses.

As for stocks, airlines and cruise operators were under pressure as the new COVID-19 strain threatened fears of further travel restrictions.

Elsewhere, Tesla Inc. was expected to open sharply lower after the stocks were added to the S&P 500 after Friday’s closing bell. The electric vehicle maker led by Elon Musk accounts for 1.69% of the index and is the eighth-largest member.

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Oil majors Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp. fell as West Texas Intermediate crude oil fell from $ 2.29 to $ 46.81 per barrel.

On the upside, financials including JP Morgan Chase & Co., Bank of America, Citigroup Inc. and Goldman Sachs Group were on the rise after the Federal Reserve said on Friday night that banks could resume share buybacks after programs were suspended in June amid COVID. -19 related concerns.

On earnings, Nike Inc. posted better quarterly results than Wall Street estimates, boosted by the sneaker giant’s $ 2 billion first quarter in China and digital sales growth of 84% from year after year.

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European markets were weaker across the board, with the German DAX down 3%, the French CAC down 2.98% and the UK FTSE 100 down 2.57%.

Asian markets ended up mixed with China’s Shanghai Composite Index up 0.76%, Japan’s Nikkei 225 down 0.18% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng down 0.72% .

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