The votes are still counted in key battle states and it could take several days before a winner appears in the presidential election. But that uncertainty did not stop the stock market from spiking Wednesday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJ INDICATOR: ^ DJI) was up about 2.5% by 1:25 pm EST.
Shares of UnitedHealth (NYSE: UNH) and technology giants apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT)and salesforce.com (NYSE: CRM) are big bull stocks. While, Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT) was Dow̵7;s biggest loser when the potential for a major infrastructure bill dimmed.
UnitedHealth rockets higher
UnitedHealth was the Dow’s big winner on Wednesday, with health insurance shares up 11.5% in the early afternoon. While the votes are still being counted, it is unlikely that Democrats will gain control of both houses of Congress alongside the presidency. A Biden’s presidency with the Republican Senate or Trump’s second term is likely to significantly reduce the chances of any dramatic health-care legislative action.
Including Wednesday’s gain, UnitedHealth shares have risen about 22% since the beginning of the year.
Caterpillar sank lower
Dow’s biggest loser on Wednesday was heavy machinery maker Caterpillar. The company had to deal with a severe demand decline caused by the coronavirus pandemic. In the third quarter, sales were down 23% and earnings per share fell 54%.
With Democrats wiping out both executive and legislative branches seem unlikely, Mr. Biden’s plan to pour $ 2 trillion into Biden’s infrastructure projects in the first term probably won’t happen. out. Shares of Caterpillar fell 5.5% in the early hours of Wednesday afternoon as the outlook for a soaring demand from government spending disappeared. Shares are still up about 7% so far even though the company is facing a hard time.
Big technology skyrocketed
Shares of Apple, Microsoft, and Salesforce recorded big gains Wednesday as investors jumped in the biggest tech stocks. In the early afternoon, Apple shares rose 4.1%, Microsoft increased 5.3% and Salesforce increased 5.7%.
Major tech stocks rallied this year after recovering from a pandemic sell-off in March, while Apple, Microsoft and Salesforce face potential risks from a prolonged pandemic. , the economy is weak and the lack of additional stimulus, investors are setting those fears aside the day after the election.
The fate of Apple stock in the coming months may depend on the success of the 5G-enabled iPhone 12 family. The company neglected to provide guidance when it last reported results, and demand for its expensive equipment will almost certainly suffer if Congress does not pass additional stimulus laws. or if the law is narrow in scope.
Microsoft and Salesforce are more enterprise-focused than Apple, and neither company has felt pain from the pandemic so far. But tech companies facing other businesses have seen customers reduce spending in the face of economic uncertainty. Ultimately, that weakness that could have come to tech companies has so far been largely unaffected by the effects of the pandemic.
While the Dow rallied sharply on Wednesday, pandemic and the possibility of a legal turmoil following a very close election could cause some volatility in stock markets in the coming weeks.