Dow Trades Higher but Wall Street Wobbles After Record Highs

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Stocks fluctuated Tuesday after the three major stock market indexes set intraday record highs during the session.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 74 points, or 0.24%, to 31,532 – the blue-chip index had risen as much as 150 points earlier in the session. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq traded lower after kicking off Tuesday with records.

Wall Street had extended record highs at Tuesday’s outset as investors bet that improved vaccine distribution and more fiscal relief from the U.S. government would aid in the economy’s recovery.

U.S. markets were closed Monday for the Presidents Day holiday. Stocks kicked the long weekend off right with the three major indexes closing Friday at record highs.

For the week, the Dow rose 1%, the S&P 500 gained 1.2% and the Nasdaq rose 1.7%.

Brent crude oil touched the highest level since January 2020 as a cold snap in Texas boosted power and fuel demand.

Brent crude oil, the global benchmark, traded around $63 a barrel as freezing temperatures in Texas were causing unprecedented power shortages across the state as refiners were forced to shut down. West Texas Intermediate crude rose 0.69% to $59.88 a barrel.

CVS Health  (CVS) – Get Report reported stronger-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings, thanks in part to solid pharmacy sales.

Corporate earnings during the fourth quarter have impressed, even amid a pullback in consumer spending and uncertainty over the path of the coronavirus heading into the holiday season.

With just more than 75% of the S&P 500 reporting, fourth-quarter earnings are expected to grow 3.5% from last year to a share-weighted $356.3 billion, according to Refinitiv, with current-quarter earnings looking at a 21.1% improvement from a year earlier.

Bitcoin’s tremendous rally rolled on as the world’s largest cryptocurrency set a record above $50,000.