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new records

Dow Jones, S&P 500 reach record highs after Moderna's vaccine news

The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 both rose to record highs on Monday following more great news about a COVID-19 vaccine candidate.

The Dow climbed 471 points to close at 29,950.44, while the S&P 500 rose 1.2 percent to 3,626.91, CNN and The Associated Press report. The new record highs were reached after Moderna announced that data suggested its COVID-19 vaccine candidate is nearly 95 percent effective, better than experts had been anticipating.

The Dow came close to hitting 30,000 for the first time ever, and it broke its previous closing record of 29,551.42, which was set in February before the markets started to sink as the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United States, AP notes. Stocks also rallied last week after Pfizer unveiled data suggesting its own COVID-19 vaccine candidate is also more than 90 percent effective.

At the same time, Bloomberg writes that as COVID-19 cases climb in the U.S., "concerns about a sustainable economic recovery persist." But Capital Economics economist Neil Shearing wrote on Monday, per CNN, "Markets are focused on the increasing likelihood of a vaccine breakthrough." And Principal Global Investors chief strategist Seema Shah noted, per The Wall Street Journal, "2020 is a year we won't ever forget and yet somehow equity markets have completely erased it from their memory."