By Medha Singh
(Reuters) – U.S. stocks rose on Monday, with gains in Amazon and technology stocks as well as a surprise rebound in U.S. factory activity helping markets attempt a recovery from steep weekly losses due to concerns over the coronavirus epidemic.
ISM data showed the manufacturing expanded in January after five straight months of contraction, indicating that a slump in business investment has probably bottomed out.
“The coronavirus has been an excuse for the markets to take rest,” said Clark Kendall, president and CEO of Kendall Capital. “If you look past the coronavirus, it creates a great opportunity for an investor.”
Google-parent Alphabet Inc gained 3.1% ahead of its quarterly results, which will wrap up earnings for the so-called FAANG stocks.
Microsoft Corp rose 2.1%, helping the technology index advance 1.3%, the most among the 11 major S&P indexes.
Also helping the mood was an intervention by China’s central bank to improve liquidity and relieve pressure on its economy from the impact of the virus outbreak.
Concerns about the economic fallout of the virus outbreak, which has been declared a global emergency, shaved off more than 600 points from the Dow on Friday. The S&P 500 closed its worst week in six months, while the Nasdaq suffered its steepest weekly decline in four months.
At 12:52 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 188.40 points, or 0.67%, at 28,444.43, the S&P 500 was up 28.89 points, or 0.90%, at 3,254.41. The Nasdaq Composite was up 126.00 points, or 1.38%, at 9,276.93.
Nike Inc rose 4.1% after JP Morgan added the footwear maker to its focus list.
Gilead Sciences Inc gained 5.5% after the drugmaker said it has provided its experimental Ebola therapy for use in a small number of patients affected by the coronavirus in China.
Tesla jumped 15% as Japan’s Panasonic Corp posted its first ever quarterly profit in its U.S. battery business with the electric-car maker.
Exxon Mobil Corp dropped 2.3% after Goldman Sachs downgraded the oil major’s shares to “sell”.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 2.17-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 2.25-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded 23 new 52-week highs and eight new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 53 new highs and 61 new lows.
(Reporting by Medha Singh and Sruthi Sankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)