U.S. Stocks Seeing Modest Strength Amid Light Trading

After moving sharply higher over the course of the previous session, stocks are turning in a relatively lackluster performance in morning trading on Tuesday. Despite the choppy trading, the S&P 500 has inched up to a new record intraday high.

Currently, the major averages are posting modest gains. The Dow is up 152.52 points or 0.4 percent at 36,454.90, the Nasdaq is up 12.10 points or 0.1 percent at 15,883.36 and the S&P 500 is up 8.48 points or 0.2 percent at 4,799.67.

The lackluster performance on Wall Street comes as traders seem somewhat reluctant to continue making significant moves following the recent strength in the markets.

A lack of major U.S. economic data may also be keeping some traders on the sidelines ahead of the release of reports on weekly jobless claims, pending home sales and Chicago-area business activity in the coming days.

At the same time, traders have refrained from cashing in on recent gains amid easing concerns about the impact of the Omicron variant of the coronavirus.

Helping offset worries about the pandemic, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has shortened the recommended isolation time to for asymptomatic people with Covid-19 to 5 days from 10 days.

The CDC said the change is motivated by science demonstrating that the majority of Covid transmission occurs early in the course of illness, generally in the 1-2 days prior to onset of symptoms and the 2-3 days after.

“Therefore, people who test positive should isolate for 5 days and, if asymptomatic at that time, they may leave isolation if they can continue to mask for 5 days to minimize the risk of infecting others,” the CDC said.

Most of the major sectors are showing only modest moves on the day, contributing to the lackluster performance by the broader markets.

Airline and housing stocks are seeing some strength in morning trading, while steel stocks have moved to the downside.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly higher during trading on Tuesday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index shot up by 1.4 percent, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index rose by 0.4 percent.

European stocks have also moved to the upside on the day. While the U.K. markets remained closed, the French CAC 40 Index is up by 0.5 percent and the German DAX Index is up by 0.6 percent.

In the bond market, treasuries are seeing continued strength after ending the previous session modestly higher. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is down by 2.4 basis points at 1.457 percent.

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