Stocks drop as COVID-19 cases rise, stimulus hopes fade


Stocks opened with early losses Monday as U.S. daily coronavirus cases hit record highs and stimulus negotiations appear unlikely to produce a bipartisan relief deal before Election Day.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened with a loss of more than 420 points Monday, falling 1.5 percent after more than 83,000 new U.S. cases of COVID-19 were confirmed Saturday, shattering previous records. The S&P 500 index fell 1.1 percent and the Nasdaq composite fell 0.5 percent.

Monday’s losses come amid increasing concern that the U.S will suffer under a punishing, nationwide surge in coronavirus cases with no further help from the federal government until after the election. The rise in COVID-19 cases has sparked fears that the U.S. will need to reimpose restrictions and business closures that had been previously lifted, following in the footsteps of European countries who have done the same. 

The U.S. is on track to face that resurgence without the boost from a bipartisan coronavirus relief bill barring a stunning breakthrough in talks between Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiBrown says Biden’s first moves as president should be COVID relief, voting rights Sunday shows – Spotlight shifts to positive tests among Pence aides Pelosi dismisses talk of White House compromise on stimulus: They ‘keep moving the goal post’ MORE (D-Calif.) and Treasury Secretary Steven MnuchinSteven Terner MnuchinPelosi dismisses talk of White House compromise on stimulus: They ‘keep moving the goal post’ Sunday shows preview: Trump, Biden gear up for final sprint to Election Day Hillicon Valley: Treasury sanctions Russian group accused of targeting critical facilities | Appeals court rules Uber, Lyft must comply with labor laws | Biden: Countries that target US elections will ‘pay a price’ MORE

The top Democratic and Republican negotiators reported slow but steady progress over nearly three weeks of negotiations intended to cement a bipartisan deal before Election Day. But the talks have devolved into finger-pointing and appear to be unlikely to produce a deal with less than two weeks until Nov. 3.

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