Dow hits new record on vaccine, stimulus optimism

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The Dow shot to a fresh record Monday on optimism about the impending passage of a new US stimulus package and the rising momentum of coronavirus vaccination campaigns.

At about 1840 GMT, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.9 percent at 32,099.41, a bit below a new all-time peak hit earlier in the session.

The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.7 percent to 3,868.69, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index fell 0.9 percent to 12,804.13.

The surge came as President Joe Biden's $1.9 trillion economic support package moved one step closer to reality after the Senate approved the legislation, sending it back to the House for final passage.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new guidelines saying that people who have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19 can gather indoors unmasked with others who have been vaccinated.

That highly anticipated announcement came as US vaccination rates tick higher.

Some 59 million Americans have now received one or more vaccine doses -- about 23 percent of the adult population -- and the immunization rate has been steadily rising after a shaky start.

The market rally Monday lifted companies especially well positioned for an economic recovery, such as Marriott International, up 3.4 percent, American Airlines, up 5.2 percent and cruise line Royal Caribbean, up 3.0 percent.

Other sectors that did well included industrials and financials, while large tech names like Apple and Google parent Alphabet dropped.