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S&P 500, Dow Close Lower, But Media Stocks Support Bullish Bets -Breaking


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By Yasin Ebrahim – The S&P 500 and Dow it intraday highs on Thursday, but closed lower despite a rally in media stocks that supported bullish bets.

After earlier reaching a new intraday record 4,808.52, the Nasdaq closed 0.3% lower. The fell 0.3% or 90.5 points after touching an all-time high at 36,679.44. Nasdaq ended 0.2% lower.

Communication services were pushed higher by a rally in ViacomCBS (NASDAQ:), and Discovery (NASDAQ:) and other video streaming stocks following expectations that U.S. video content spending is set to ramp up in 2022.

According to the Financial Times, eight of America’s largest media companies including Netflix (NASDAQ) intend to invest at least $100 Billion in new films and TV shows.

Twitter (NYSE 🙂 led the sector higher. It rose more than 5 percent as the social media site continued its streak of avoiding four consecutive monthly losses.

The decline of Micron, which was slowing down the growth in tech stocks, had weighed on Tech.

Micron Technology (NASDAQ:) fell more than 2% after warning that fresh Covid shutdown in Xi’an, China, would weigh on output.

Sentiment on stocks was also boosted by positive vaccine news after Johnson & Johnson’s booster shot was found to be 85% effective in preventing hospitalizations in a South African study. Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:) was up about 0.4%.

This positive news is coming as health professionals warn about disruptions in the weeks ahead, as the omicron Covid-19 strain continues to decimate the U.S. As the U.S. reached 488,000 daily new cases on Wednesday, it set a record-breaking one-day total.

Biogen (NASDAQ) lost more than 7 percent from the previous day, after Samsung (KS) reported that they were in negotiations to acquire the company’s health care business for $42billion.  

Cruise line companies including Carnival (NYSE:), and Royal Caribbean Cruises (NYSE:) were on the back foot after after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday said travelers should avoid going on cruises even if they’re vaccinated

In the meantime, unemployment insurance claims fell from 206,000 to 198,000 in week end Dec. 25, according to economic data. This was better than expected, as claims remained at their lowest level in 52 years.

Jefferies, however, warned that the jobless claims, which tend to deteriorate this time of the year, still  isn’t showing any impact from the Omicron surge.

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