Tech Stocks Slide as California Shuts Down Again

Investors were torn from narrative to narrative on Monday, as stocks began the week emphatically higher, only to rapidly cede the day’s early gains to close broadly lower in the afternoon.

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The market began by cheering two newly fast-tracked vaccine candidates from Pfizer (ticker: PFE) and BioNTech ( BNTX), and the red-hot Nasdaq was briefly up almost 2% on the day as euphoria abounded.

Mere hours later, the tech-heavy Nasdaq had suffered its worst intraday reversal in about three months, closing down 2.1%. Wall Street quickly turned pessimistic following an order from California Gov. Gavin Newsom to close businesses like bars, dine-in restaurants and movie theaters, among others.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, up more than 500 points at times on Monday, finished essentially flat, up just 10 points, or 0.04%, to finish at 26,085.

PepsiCo proves snacking still in style. Soda and snack giant PepsiCo ( PEP) reported top- and bottom-line beats in the fiscal second quarter, which ended on June 13. Revenue of $15.95 billion easily beats analyst expectations for $15.38 billion, while earnings per share of $1.32 also breezed past the $1.25 per share Wall Street was calling for.

While sales in its North American beverage division fell more than 6% year over year, its Frito-Lay North America division advanced more than 6% in the same period, driven by a strong performance from its enviable portfolio of snack brands that includes Doritos, Fritos, Lay’s, Cheetos and other names.

Silver rallies. Silver prices jumped more than 2% on Monday, as the “risk-off” attitude that prevailed later in the day carried over to the precious metal, which is now up more than 65% from its March lows. Gold and silver are often seen by investors as attractive alternative investments to hedge the risk inherent in the stock market, and industrial demand for the metal has also helped lift silver in recent months.

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