S&P 500 ETF jumps 2% after hours on report Gilead drug showing effectiveness treating coronavirus

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The Wall Street Bull, located in the financial district of New York City.

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The ETF that tracks the S&P 500 rallied in after-hours trading Thursday after a report said a Gilead Sciences drug was showing effectiveness in treating the coronavirus. The move pointed to a jump for the stock market on Friday.

Around 5 p.m. ET, the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (SPY) was up 2%. Stock futures open at 6 p.m. ET.

Gilead shares jumped by 9% after STAT news reported that a Chicago hospital treating coronavirus patients with Remdesivir in a trial were recovering rapidly from severe symptoms. The publication cited a video it obtained where the trial results were discussed.

Stocks tumbled from record highs in February into a bear market a month later as the spread of the coronavirus roiled market sentiment and the economic outlook. 

More than 2 million cases have been confirmed worldwide, including over 650,000 in the U.S., according to Johns Hopkins University. Governments urged people to stay home, effectively shutting down the global economy. 

However, the stock market has rallied since March 23 as new coronavirus cases in the U.S. and globally showed signs of plateauing. Since then, the S&P 500 has jumped more than 25% while the Dow has gained 26.6% in that time.

To be sure, the outbreak has already dealt a massive blow to the economy. In four weeks, about 22 million Americans have lost their jobs. Retail sales posted last month their biggest fall on record.

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Gilead stock surges 15% after report says coronavirus drug trial shows encouraging early results

A Gilead Sciences office is shown in Foster City, California, U.S. May 1, 2018. Stephen Lam | Reuters Gilead Sciences shares surged by more than 15% in after-hours trading Thursday after an industry publication said Covid-19 patients being treated with the company’s antiviral drug Remdesivir appear to have “rapid recoveries […]