The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at a record high of 30,410 Wednesday, extending year-end gains with a positive outlook heading into 2021.
The Dow was up 74 points, or 0.2 percent, while the S&P 500 closed up 5 points, or 0.1 percent, remaining just below the record it set earlier in the week.
Video: Wall Street dips from record levels (Reuters – US Video Online)
Markets often rise in the waning days of December, and stocks have been particularly sunny in recent weeks as COVID-19 vaccines have been shown to be safe and effective, received emergency use authorizations and begun rolling out in the United States and other countries.
The pace of vaccinations, however, has remained slower than experts had hoped.
Meanwhile, the prospects of the Senate approving a bill to increase stimulus checks from $600 to $2,000 appear grim, as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) tied the House-passed measure to other controversial issues.