Stocks rose at Wednesday’s opening bell on Wall Street, starting July’s first trading day and the third quarter on a positive note, as news that Pfizer’s (PFE) coronavirus vaccine candidate showed progress in a trial phase put investors in a buying mood.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Preliminary trial results of an experimental coronavirus vaccine from&nbsp;Pfizer and&nbsp;BioNtech SE&nbsp;showed the drug was safe for use, and facilitated the production of antibodies against the novel virus that causes COVID-19. Expectations are high over the production of a safe and effective vaccine, even though it’s unlikely one will be available before 2021.” data-reactid=”17″>Preliminary trial results of an experimental coronavirus vaccine from Pfizer and BioNtech SE showed the drug was safe for use, and facilitated the production of antibodies against the novel virus that causes COVID-19. Expectations are high over the production of a safe and effective vaccine, even though it’s unlikely one will be available before 2021.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Record-breaking surges in coronavirus infections are setting the tone for the start of third quarter, and the second half of the year. European bourses rose on Wednesday, as investors weighed positive economic data against surging U.S. cases, which are likely to delay the global recovery.” data-reactid=”18″>Record-breaking surges in coronavirus infections are setting the tone for the start of third quarter, and the second half of the year. European bourses rose on Wednesday, as investors weighed positive economic data against surging U.S. cases, which are likely to delay the global recovery.

Nevertheless, stocks on Tuesday closed out a breathtaking second-quarter rally that took them to their best overall quarter since 1998, and best second quarter on record. During that time frame, the S&P 500 saw a near-20% run-up during the April through June period, while the Dow and Nasdaq rose about 17.5% and 30%, respectively.

The historic rally came as market participants eyed a swift infusion of fiscal and monetary policy stimulus to bolster the virus-stricken economy, and as states and cities across the country began easing their lockdown restrictions in the middle of the quarter.

On tap Wednesday are crucial reads on the U.S. labor market and manufacturing sector. ADP’s payrolls data showed that private employers added 2.37 million jobs in June, a reversal from May’s steep 3 million-plus losses but below market expectations of 2.95 million jobs in June. Separately, the ISM manufacturing index will likely show continued improvement in June.

Those figures come ahead of the more pivotal nonfarm payrolls report, which is forecast to show the battered U.S. economy created 3 million jobs last month — up from 2.5 million in May.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="However, investor expectations are more tied to new surges in COVID-19 infections, which are walloping the Sun Belt states, prompting more states and cities to rollback reopening plans. Tuesday saw the world’s largest economy report its worst-ever number of new cases, 47,000, with public health officials warning it could soar to 100,000 daily.” data-reactid=”25″>However, investor expectations are more tied to new surges in COVID-19 infections, which are walloping the Sun Belt states, prompting more states and cities to rollback reopening plans. Tuesday saw the world’s largest economy report its worst-ever number of new cases, 47,000, with public health officials warning it could soar to 100,000 daily.

That may put a definitive cap on a market that’s skyrocketed since plunging to multi-year lows in when lockdowns first began in March.

“We’ve seen a huge move in the second quarter, and to be fair, it’s been driven by a lot of positivity,” Tom Essaye, founder of the Sevens Report, told Yahoo Finance’s The First Trade on Tuesday.

Yet “the virus count is rising,” Essaye added. “That at a minimum is going to delay the economic reopening, and markets have to price that in a bit. And I think there is a bit more for it to turn sideways or further dip.”

As of Tuesday, Texas posted its worst day for new coronavirus infections and hospitalizations so far since the start of the pandemic, with the state seeing 6,975 positive tests for a total of 159,986. Cases in California rose by 6,367, its second-largest jump yet.

The inability to predict how and when the U.S. will wrest control of rising infections, along with uncertainty over corporate profits and the economy, has meant a lack of conviction among market participants as to where stocks are going in the second half.

<h2 class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="9:30 a.m. ET: Wall Street jumps on the first day of Q3; Pfizer surges” data-reactid=”32″>9:30 a.m. ET: Wall Street jumps on the first day of Q3; Pfizer surges

Major indices rallied to start the first day of July and the third quarter of a turbulent year. News on the coronavirus vaccine front helped to grease the wheels of a rally, sending Pfizer’s stock up more than 5% in early dealings.

Here were the main moves in markets, as of 9:38 a.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 (^GSPC): 3,114.90, +14.61 (+0.47%)

  • Dow (^DJI): 25,976.06, +163.18 (+0.63%)

  • Nasdaq (^IXIC): 10,067.94, +9.17 (+0.09%)

  • Crude (CL=F): $39.71, +0.44 cents (+1.12%)

  • Gold (GC=F): $1,787.40 per ounce, -$13.10 (-0.73%)

  • 10-year Treasury (^TNX): +0.031, yielding 0.684%

<h2 class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="9:15 a.m. ET: Stocks pop as Pfizer says COVID vaccine shows promise” data-reactid=”43″>9:15 a.m. ET: Stocks pop as Pfizer says COVID vaccine shows promise

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Wall Street turned positive after drug giant Pfizer (PFE) said an early trial of an experimental coronavirus vaccine showed its safe. In addition, the treatment prompted patients to produce antibodies against the new virus. With much riding on the aggressive efforts to develop an effective vaccine, investors are likely to bid up prices as individual candidates show promise.” data-reactid=”44″>Wall Street turned positive after drug giant Pfizer (PFE) said an early trial of an experimental coronavirus vaccine showed its safe. In addition, the treatment prompted patients to produce antibodies against the new virus. With much riding on the aggressive efforts to develop an effective vaccine, investors are likely to bid up prices as individual candidates show promise.

<h2 class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="8:45 a.m. ET: Trump slumps in betting markets amid ‘perfect storm of woes’” data-reactid=”50″>8:45 a.m. ET: Trump slumps in betting markets amid ‘perfect storm of woes’

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="New data from Smarkets, a predictive political betting market, shows President Donald Trump’s fortunes are definitively on the decline, as a raft of bad news hits his reelection bid as his Democratic challenger consolidates his electoral support.” data-reactid=”55″>New data from Smarkets, a predictive political betting market, shows President Donald Trump’s fortunes are definitively on the decline, as a raft of bad news hits his reelection bid as his Democratic challenger consolidates his electoral support.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Smarkets investors show the president’s chances falling to 34% in its $3.1m&nbsp;election-winner market — his lowest position on Smarkets&nbsp;since March 2019.&nbsp;Meanwhile, former Vice President Joe Biden is seen having a 59% chance of prevailing, within striking distance of Trump’s all-time high of 61%.” data-reactid=”56″>Smarkets investors show the president’s chances falling to 34% in its $3.1m election-winner market — his lowest position on Smarkets since March 2019. Meanwhile, former Vice President Joe Biden is seen having a 59% chance of prevailing, within striking distance of Trump’s all-time high of 61%.

“Donald Trump faces a perfect storm of grave national security allegations, historically bad poll numbers, Black Lives Matter protests, economic turmoil, and a resurgence in coronavirus cases,” Smarkets Head of Political Markets Sarbjit Bakhshi said.

“The tide seems to have turned against the President who was at 61% to win the election back in February, and it is difficult to see how he can stage a comeback from this point. Whether the GOP may do the unthinkable and drop him remains to be seen, but at this stage all options will need to be on the table,” he added.

<h2 class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="8:15 a.m. ET: ADP data shows big jump in private payrolls in June” data-reactid=”60″>8:15 a.m. ET: ADP data shows big jump in private payrolls in June

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Private sector employers added a total of 2,369,000 jobs in the month ended in June, according to ADP’s National Employment Report. The data was a reversal from a steep loss of more than 3 million jobs in the prior month, but below consensus expectations of nearly 3 million jobs.” data-reactid=”61″>Private sector employers added a total of 2,369,000 jobs in the month ended in June, according to ADP’s National Employment Report. The data was a reversal from a steep loss of more than 3 million jobs in the prior month, but below consensus expectations of nearly 3 million jobs.

Still, the data reflected broad hiring strength across a range small, medium and large-sized businesses as companies called back employees as lockdowns gradually eased. Yet with coronavirus infections surging anew, it’s unclear how long the hiring momentum will last.

“Small business hiring picked up in the month of June,” said Ahu Yildirmaz, vice president and co-head of the ADP Research Institute in a statement.

“As the economy slowly continues to recover, we are seeing a significant rebound in industries that once experienced the greatest job losses. In fact, 70 percent of the jobs added this month were in the leisure and hospitality, trade and construction industries,” he added.

Stocks hunkered at their lows after the data, pointing to a lower open on the first trading day of Q3.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="” data-reactid=”66″>

<h2 class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="7:30 a.m. ET: Stock futures dip ahead of data” data-reactid=”67″>7:30 a.m. ET: Stock futures dip ahead of data

Here were the main moves at the start of the overnight session for U.S. equity futures, as of 7:30 a.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,071.75, off 18.50 or -0.60%

  • Dow futures (YM=F): 25,469.00, off 220.00 of -0.86%

  • Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 10,103.75, off 43.50 or -0.43%

6:07 p.m. ET: Stock futures open slightly lower

Here were the main moves at the start of the overnight session for U.S. equity futures, as of 6:07 p.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,086.5, down 3.75 points or 0.12%

  • Dow futures (YM=F): 25,668.00, down 21 points, or 0.08%

  • Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 10,140.00, down 7.25 points, or 0.07%

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 26: The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) stands in lower Manhattan on the first day that traders are allowed back onto the historic floor of the exchange on May 26, 2020 in New York City. While only a small number of traders will be returning at this time, those that do will have to take temperature checks and wear face masks at all times while on the floor. The Dow rose over 600 points in morning trading as investors see economic activity in America picking up (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 26: The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) stands in lower Manhattan on the first day that traders are allowed back onto the historic floor of the exchange on May 26, 2020 in New York City. While only a small number of traders will be returning at this time, those that do will have to take temperature checks and wear face masks at all times while on the floor. The Dow rose over 600 points in morning trading as investors see economic activity in America picking up (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MAY 26: The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) stands in lower Manhattan on the first day that traders are allowed back onto the historic floor of the exchange on May 26, 2020 in New York City. While only a small number of traders will be returning at this time, those that do will have to take temperature checks and wear face masks at all times while on the floor. The Dow rose over 600 points in morning trading as investors see economic activity in America picking up (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

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