Futures volatile, Dow’s best week since 1938, Trump extends guidelines

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US President Donald Trump speaks during a Coronavirus Task Force press briefing in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington, DC, on March 29, 2020.

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7:43 am: Distancing guidelines extended through April

President Donald Trump announced Sunday that the social distancing guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have been extended until April 30. Trump said his previous statements about the country lifting the Guidelines on Easter, which is April 12, were an “aspiration.” White House health advisor Anthony Fauci said Sunday that the country could see between 100,000 and 200,000 deaths from the pandemic. — Pound

7:24 am: Dow tries to extend gains after best week since 1938

U.S. stock index futures were little changed ahead of Monday’s open as markets look to extend last week’s strength. While stocks moved lower on Friday, the major averages still managed to post gains for the week — and then some. It was the Dow Jones Industrial Average’s best week since 1938, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite registered their largest weekly jump since 2009.

Investors cheered the $2 trillion stimulus package aimed at combating the coronavirus-induced economic slowdown, as well as actions from the Federal Reserve, which include an open-ended asset-purchase program.

But volatility remains the name of the game. Some Street strategists say the bottom is in, while others believe stocks are in for more pain ahead as the worldwide economic impacts of the pandemic continue to reverberate. The United States now has the greatest number of coronavirus cases worldwide, and on Sunday night President Donald Trump said he was extending the national social distancing guidelines to April 30. He had previously said he hoped the economy would “open” back up by Easter Sunday on April 12.

On Monday, the Dow was set to open 25 points lower, while stock futures pointed to small gains for the S&P 500 and Nasdaq. Futures were volatile once again in overnight trading– Stevens

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