The Coast Is Not Clear. Wall Street’s Roller Coaster Ride Will Continue Through Election Day

FILE - In this Oct. 14, 2020 file photo, pedestrians pass the New York Stock Exchange in New York. Stocks are opening higher on Wall Street Tuesday, Oct. 20 as traders look over several solid earnings reports from U.S. companies. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, File)

Ladies and gentlemen, start your roller coasters.

The dizzying market volatility is showing no signs of relief as Election Day nears, with financial analysts and consumers reacting to rumors, conversations and hopes for a stimulus deal.

Stocks moved higher on Tuesday morning, indicating the deadline for a pre-election day deal on a stimulus agreement has increased the urgency. The Dow was up more than 180 points approaching 9 a.m. PT, or 0.65%; the NASDAQ up 54, almost 0.5%;, and the S&P 500 up 22 points at 0.64%.

Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi were set to speak on Tuesday, following a 53-minute phone conversation on Monday during which a Pelosi spokesman said on Twitter the sides “continued to narrow their differences.”

Millions of Americans who remain unemployed saw the key to their initial stimulus money–the CARES Act – expire at the end of July and are likely running very low this month.

In recent weeks, both parties have pushed relief bills. House Democrats passed two bills that stood little chance in the Senate, and the Republicans planned to vote on a $500 billion package this week that is aimed at primarily helping small businesses.

House Democrats pushed for an overall stimulus bill at a $2.2 trillion price tag, while the White House increased its offer to near $1.9 trillion. But the substance in those packages remains quite different.

Tom Lee, founder and head of research at Fundstrat Global Advisors, told CNBC he doesn’t necessarily think a deal will be done in short order, but that the work toward an agreement is major news. “While markets might see this as less significant (since a deal is likely post-election day), it is a big deal for those Americans with expiring benefits,” Lee said. “So, we think it is very important for Washington to get a deal done.”

The uncertainty pushed stocks down on Monday, and analysts have said the wild swings on Wall Street are likely to continue through Election Day.

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