The US market seen under pressure amid new COVID-19 strain

U.S. stock markets started with a mixed course on Tuesday as the news on a new strain of coronavirus and fears of new restrictions continue to weigh on investor sentiment.

By 9:55 am ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 142 points, or 0.5%, to 30,074, while (NYSE: S&P 500) remained largely unchanged and the NASDAQ Composite was up by 0.4%.

The market did not react too much to a slight upward revision of the record data on US GDP growth for the third quarter, which was also marked by a slight decrease in personal consumer spending (compared to its first value). The passage of the $ 900 billion fiscal stimulus package through Congress was also already included in prices, and the data on sales of finished homes in November almost coincided with the forecast and amounted to 6.69 million.

Among the most visible stocks in early trading were Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), which rose 4.3% after Reuters reported that the company had revived plans to develop electric self-driving cars after several years in which it seemed was pushed into the back drawer. According to Reuters, the company plans to enter the market with a mass product by 2024.

Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA), which is at risk of losing some of its unique status as a result of competition with one of the few companies with such a powerful brand, fell 1.4%.

Peloton Interactive (NASDAQ: PTON) saw the biggest gains, however, at 13.5%, after the company announced it would buy Precor, a rival fitness equipment maker. The deal will help Peloton expand its manufacturing capacity in response to the growing demand for its products during the pandemic. The deal, which will cost Peloton $ 420 million, will increase the company’s market value by more than $ 3 billion.

CarMax (NYSE: KMX) shares fell 7% after the company reported a 1% drop in comparable used car sales in the three months to November. The market was more upset by this fact than impressed by the company’s growth in net profit.

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