Stocks jump as concerns ease over retail trading frenzy, Amazon will have a new CEO, and the Biden administration ramps up vaccine distribution. Here's how the headlines affect your money.
Stock indexes jumped on Tuesday. The Dow and Nasdaq each gained 1.6%, while the S&P 500 jumped by 1.4%.
The second straight day of gains in the broad stock market coincided with a further slide in the value of so-called "meme stocks," which traders on Reddit's WallStreetBets message board and other retail investors had propelled to huge gains in recent weeks. Shares of Gamestop sank 60% Tuesday, while AMC Entertainment slid by more than 41%.
But the recent declines likely haven't deterred these traders from introducing this kind of volatility in the future, says billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban. "I think now that they've recognized their power and now that they've learned some lessons, we're going to get more of it, not less of it," he said on CNBC's "Squawk Alley." "It's not going to be a set of circumstances where all these people lost money, they're going to go home with their tail between their legs, and they're never going to do this again."
Market-watchers waiting for quarterly earnings results from Amazon.com received even bigger news: Company founder Jeff Bezos will step down as CEO in the third quarter and will be replaced by Andy Jassy, who currently runs the Amazon Web Services cloud-computing team. Bezos isn't leaving altogether: He'll stay on as executive chair and focus on passion projects, such as the Bezos Earth Fund and The Washington Post.
Shares of Amazon, the third-largest publicly traded company by market cap, bounced around after hours. The shares traded slightly higher on Wednesday morning.
The U.S. will boost its weekly Covid-19 vaccine shipments to states by 5% and begin sending doses directly to pharmacies, Biden administration officials said Tuesday. Shipments to drugstores will begin on February 11, starting with about 6,500 stores and eventually expanding to 40,000 retailers.
The increase comes as the administration pledges to up supply to states. Having recently ordered 100 million additional doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, the government will be able to provide doses for 300 million Americans by early fall, it says. Providers receiving doses from the government cannot bill patients for expenses.
The soon-to-be CEO of Amazon has headed Amazon Web Services, Amazon's highly profitable cloud-computing business, since its inception. Revenue from AWS jumped 28% in the most recent quarter. Overall, the business, which is used by companies ranging from Airbnb to Zillow, accounts for 52% of Amazon's total operating profit.
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