Stock market live updates: Dow and S&P 500 climb, Nasdaq leads as Apple, Amazon rise

The Cboe Volatility Index, Wall Street’s preferred fear gauge, fell to its lowest level in a week, breaking below 60. It was last down 12.4 points, or 17%, at 59.62. Earlier this week, the VIX surged above 80 and breached its 2008 financial crisis high. — Imbert

Friday coincided with a quarter-end event called “quadruple witching,” when options and futures on indexes and individual stocks expire. This adds another source of volatility to the market’s roller-coaster ride amid the coronavirus uncertainty. “Given the recent outsized level of volatility we’ve seen on almost every day, this expiration could easily be a wild one,” said Matt Maley, chief market strategist at Miller Tabak. The Dow and the S&P 500 have been swinging between losses and gains during Friday’s morning trading. Quadruple witching usually sees a surge in trading volumes. Just about an hour into Friday’s session, the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) has already traded more than 50 million shares, according to FactSet. — Li

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Friday that the IRS will postpone Tax Day to July 15 from April 15 in an effort to blunt the impact of the coronavirus. Mnuchin added that, at President Donald Trump’s direction, all taxpayers and business will have this additional time to “file and make payments without interest or penalties.” — Franck

Analysts upgraded a slew of stocks in Friday’s calls of the day as investors hope for signs of a market turnaround.

  • Wells Fargo upgraded Uber to overweight from equal weight.
  • JPMorgan upgraded Oracle to overweight from neutral.
  • Bank of America upgraded Nike to buy from neutral.
  • Piper Sandler upgraded Gilead to overweight from neutral.
  • JPMorgan upgraded Tyson Foods to overweight from neutral.
  • Citi upgraded Lululemon, Ulta, and Ross to buy from neutral.
  • KeyBanc upgraded Dollar Tree to overweight from sector weight.
  • Deutsche Bank upgraded UnitedHealthcare to buy from hold.
  • Bank of America upgraded Cardinal Health to buy from underperform.
  • Wells Fargo upgraded Snap to overweight from equal weight.
  • Guggenheim upgraded Pepsi, Monster, Constellation Brands, and Molson Coors to buy from neutral.
  • Mizuho upgraded Lam Research to buy from neutral.
  • Bank of America upgraded Colgate-Palmolive to buy from neutral.

— Bloom

The Dow and S&P 500 traded slightly lower 10 minutes after the opening bell, but the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.5% as Microsoft, Amazon, Apple, and Facebook all gained. Some stocks that had taken outsized beatings amid coronavirus headlines bounced on Friday with MGM Resorts up 18%, Wynn Resorts up 9.7%, Carnival up 7.3% and Hilton Worldwide up 5.8%. UnitedHealth led the Dow higher while Goldman Sachs had the largest negative impact on the 30-stock index. — Franck

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2020/03/20/stock-market-live-today.html

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