Dow Swings Wildly After Trial ‘Flop’ Ignites Coronavirus Drug Fears

  • The Dow Jones was knocked from its highs on Thursday after the leading candidate for a coronavirus treatment failed a big test.
  • A strong start to the day saw the stock market initially shrug off another 4 million jobless claims.
  • ING reports that less than half of working-age Americans will have a paycheck next month.

A resurgent Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) slammed into a wall on Thursday after Gilead Sciences’ experimental coronavirus treatment drug reportedly “flopped” in its first trial.

The Financial Times broke the story, which triggered wild volatility across the stock market but especially in GILD – whose shares were halted.

Gilead defended the potential of remdesivir, but the incident highlights the difficulty of fast-tracking a COVID-19 treatment as the U.S. economic predicament continues to worsen.

Dow Dives Off Its Highs After Coronavirus Drug ‘Flops’

The Dow Jones reversed sharply after the first trial of Remdesivir flopped. | Source: Yahoo Finance

All three major U.S. stock market indices lost ground after the remdesivir news broke and remained volatile throughout the afternoon session.

  • The Dow rose 147.92 points or 0.63% to 23,623.74.
  • The S&P 500 gained 0.39% to trade at 2,810.05.
  • The Nasdaq climbed 0.43% to 8,532.09.

Crude oil provided another lift for the stock market. WTI futures surged 23% to $17 per barrel, while Brent rose 6% to $21.50.

With several U.S. states planning to ease coronavirus lockdown restrictions, and other nations lifting quarantine measures as well, oil consumption is expected to tick up, though the market remains deeply oversupplied.

The price of gold rallied 0.6% to just beneath the $1,750 handle.

Why Gilead Sciences Infected the Entire Stock Market

Gilead Sciences’ hotly-anticipated drug remdesivir was the presumptive frontrunner in the race to bring a coronavirus treatment to market. Unfortunately, it appears that the first trial did not go well.

But as GILD stock collapsed into a trading halt, many…

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