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Dow rises 236 points as Biden says no to Omicron lockdowns

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Dow rises 236 points as Biden says no to Omicron lockdowns
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 236 points Monday as markets rallied from losses to end the prior week of trading after President Joe Biden sought to ease concerns about the Omicron COVID-19 variant. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 29 (UPI) -- U.S. markets bounced back from Friday's losses after President Joe Biden sought to ease concerns about the emerging Omicron COVID-19 variant Monday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 236.6 points, or 0.68%, while the S&P 500 rose 1.32% and the Nasdaq Composite closed the day up 1.88%.

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Stocks fell on Friday with the Dow posting its worst day since October 2020 and all three major indexes falling into negative territory for the holiday-shortened week of trading amid concerns over the variant.

Biden on Monday said that the Omicron variant is a "cause for concern, not a cause for panic" while assuring that lockdowns or new travel restrictions would not be required to combat the spread.

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"If people are vaccinated and wear their masks, there's no need for lockdowns," he said.

Henry Allen, a Deutsche Bank research analyst, wrote in a note that it was too soon to determine the effect Omicron would have on the markets.

"What should we be looking for? A strong leading indicator will be what happens to hospitalizations and deaths in South Africa, where this has become dominant," Allen wrote. "If there is a noticeable spike, then that carries concerning implications for elsewhere."

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Moderna stock rose 11.8% after a 20% gain on Friday. The company said a new vaccine to address the Omicron variant could be available in early 2022.

Tech stocks led Monday's gains as shares of Tesla rose 5.09%, Apple gained 2.19% and Amazon increased 1.63%. Twitter stock closed the day down 2.74% after rising earlier in the day as founder Jack Dorsey announced his resignation as CEO.

Royal Caribbean stock gained 2.78% and United Airlines rose 0.66% in a rollercoaster day of trading for travel stocks that rose and fell with the Omicron news.

RELATED Fauci warns Omicron may 'evade immune protection' from COVID-19

Monday also saw Wells Fargo stock rise 1.51% and PNC Financial gain 0.39% as the 10-year treasury yield rose back above 1.5%.

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