Stock futures jumped early this morning on a bit of coronavirus related optimism. Government stimulus checks have started to hit American bank accounts, and early earnings reports provided some good news. Dow Jones futures were up 1.9% pre-open, followed by the S&P 500 at +2.1% and the Nasdaq at 2.1%. Corporate earnings reports are believed to be the buoy for this stock market rally. In the Dow Jones, Johnson and Johnson led the way up with their earnings, followed by a 1% rise from JP Morgan Chase in their first big bank report of the year.
On the coronavirus front, worldwide and U.S. cases appear like they are beginning to stabilize. While the number of cases continues to grow, the pace at which it is growing is starting to slow which is a good indicator that practicing social distancing is working. In the U.S. the latest reported number was a 4.8% infection increase, which brings our total infected to 597,173. Preliminary discussions on reopening the U.S. economy have started to step into the foreground of the conversation as governors on the east and west coast formed committees to discuss how and when to open their economies. We all want the economy reopened as soon as possible, but for this to work it has to be done right, otherwise we run the risk of a new wave of infection. Stay safe and stay healthy out there.