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SP 500 Ends Lower as New COVID Storm Clouds Overshadow Stimulus Passage

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NEW YORK, Dec 22 Reuters The SP 500 lost ground at the end of a whipsaw session on Tuesday as concerns over a new variant of the coronavirus and disappointing economic data stole the thunder from Washingtons passage of a longawaited pandemic relief bill.

The Dow also closed lower, while Apple Inc helped fuel the techheavy Nasdaqs advance.

Today the market is catching its breath, said Ryan Detrick, senior market strategist at LPL Financial in Charlotte, North Carolina. Its digesting the two big pieces of news weve gotten in the last 24 hours, the stimulus and the new COVID strain.

Still, this is typically a seasonally bullish time of year, Detrick added, saying the market doesnt care about the past or present. The market only cares about the future.

Apple was an outlier amid a broad selloff, its stock jumping on news of the companys plans to roll out an electric passenger vehicle by 2024.

Overnight, Congress passed a pandemic relief package worth 892 billion after months of a partisan tugofwar, aimed at propping up an economic recovery faltering under the weight of restrictions aimed at containing a coronavirus resurgence.

That resurgence continues to swell, infecting 214,000 Americans every day, prompting mandatory shutdowns and pushing hospitals to capacity.

A fastspreading new variant of the virus discovered in Britain has brought movement in and out of the UK to a halt and sent vaccine makers Pfizer Inc and Moderna Inc scrambling to ensure their drugs were…

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