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David Becker

US stocks rallied on Monday, buoyed by news of Astrazenacas vaccine results, which was the 3rd consecutive Monday where the markets absorbed positive vaccine news. Positive preliminary PMI data released on Monday by Markit, along with news that President-elect Biden would likely nominate Janet Yellen as the next Treasury Secretary helped buoy the broader markets. Value shares continued to outperform growth shares, which points to a back-to-normal scenario. Most sectors in the S&P 500 index were higher, led by gains in energy shares and financials. Healthcare shares bucked the trend.

Biden Expected to Nominate Janet Yellen as Treasury Secretary

President-elect Joe Biden has chosen former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen as Treasury secretary, a historic decision that could make her the first woman to lead the Treasury. Yellen is 74, and widely respected amongst both democrats and republicans. Yellen is a graduate of Brown and Yale universities, Yellen was also the first woman to serve as Fed chair. She is likely to be a proponent of higher levels of stimulus, which helped buoy the broader markets on Monday.

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AstraZeneca Announces Vaccine REsults

The coronavirus vaccine being developed by AstraZeneca and the University of Oxford was found to be very protective and in some cases showing efficacy as high as 90%. An interim analysis of clinical trials showed the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine had an average efficacy of 70% in protecting against the virus.

PMIs Edge HIgher

Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index edged higher to 56.7 in November from 53.4 in October to according to IHS Market. The expectation had been for the PMI to show a preliminary reading of 53. Furthermore, the Services PMI rose to 57.7 from 56.9 and surpassed the analysts’ estimate of 55.3.

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