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What Did the Stock Market Do? Jan. 14, 2021

Latest Updates:

Stocks Dip to Close Thursday

[Thursday, January 14, 4:03 pm]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

  • The S&P 500 closed lower by 0.38%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 0.22%
  • The Nasdaq Composite closed lower by 0.12%
  • The Russell 2000 closed higher by 2.33%

Cathie Wood Sends Space Stocks Blasting Off

[Thursday, January 14, 3:20 pm]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Cathie Wood and her ARK invest are behind a major move in space-related equities today. That is because a new U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filing reveals that ARK is unveiling a new Space Exploration ETF. Soon to trade under ARKX, this exchange-traded fund represents a big bet on the space industry. Here is what you need to know:

  • Cathie Wood and ARK Invest are generally known for strong track records in innovative fields.
  • This means news of the ARKX ETF has many investors excited.
  • We do not yet know the details of the fund constituents, however, many investors have started to speculate.
  • Importantly, this speculation boosted pure plays on the industry like Virgin Galactic (NYSE:SPCE).
  • It has also created a rally in three space-focused special purpose acquisition companies.
  • This trio of space SPACs represents investments in space-based mobile networks, space towing and potentially, satellite services.

For more, read the InvestorPlace.com brief on space SPACs and the ARKX ETF news here.

Midday Update: Dow Adds 100+ Points

[Thursday, January 14, 1:17 pm]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

  • The S&P 500 is up 0.22%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 0.39%
  • The Nasdaq Composite is up 0.34%
  • The Russell 2000 is up 2.05%

Cannabis Stocks Climb Ahead of Inauguration

[Thursday, January 14, 1:00 pm]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

Today is yet another good day for many cannabis names. Aphria (NASDAQ:APHA), Hexo (NYSE:HEXO) and exchange-traded funds like ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF (NYSEARCA:MJ) have been on an upswing ahead of the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden. Although there are other catalysts boosting marijuana stocks, including merger speculation and new product lines, there is a general sense that federal legalization in the United States could be coming soon. With Biden taking office just next week, InvestorPlace contributor Robert Lakin thinks more of these upward moves are in store.

For more, read the InvestorPlace.com brief on cannabis stocks here.

Major Indices Open Trading in the Green

[Thursday, January 14, 9:33 am]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

  • The S&P 500 opened higher by 0.23%
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher by 0.33%
  • The Nasdaq Composite opened higher by 0.27%
  • The Russell 2000 opened lower by 0.75%

3 Big Stories to Watch

[Thursday, January 14, 9:20 am]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

  1. Impeachment. Yesterday the House of Representatives voted to impeach President Donald Trump on one count, incitement of insurrection. This makes him the first U.S. president to be impeached twice, and also sets the stage for a historic Senate vote. However, per the guidance of Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the Senate will not convene early for impeachment proceedings. What does this mean for investors? Well, as David J. Lynch wrote for the Washington Post, current levels of political uncertainty are not enough to shake the stock market. Instead, investors are looking past the impeachment and toward the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden.
  2. Stimulus, stimulus, stimulus. Speaking of that inauguration, Biden is set to unroll his stimulus proposal — worth trillions of dollars — today. Initial priorities will likely include ramping up testing and boosting the national rollout of Covid-19 vaccines from Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) and Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA). Investors are eager for further stimulus funding, so the upcoming Biden plan is boosting the major indices.
  3. Unemployment. Here we go again. Today, we learned that 965,000 Americans filed in the previous week for initial unemployment benefits. That is way more than the 789,000 economists were calling for, and it is also a move in the wrong direction. Just last week, there was a sense that the unemployment picture was changing — slowly but steadily. However, with a move back over the 800,000 and the 900,000 level, many investors may be worried. So what should you watch? With unemployment claims still elevated, there is hope that a robust stimulus package could help ease the economic pain. Look for any plans for further direct payments and enhanced federal unemployment benefits when Biden unveils his proposal later today.

Stock Market Futures Are Mixed to Launch Thursday

[Thursday, January 14, 8:45 am]
Contributed by Sarah Smith

  • S&P 500 futures are higher by 0.12%
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average futures are higher by 0.29%
  • Nasdaq Composite futures are lower by 0.01%
  • Russell 2000 futures are higher by 0.52%
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