US stocks strike record high on Biden stimulus hopes

US stocks strike record high on Biden stimulus hopes

Nasdaq outperforms after pandemic winner Netflix suggests share buybacks to come

US stock markets hit new records as Joe Biden became the 46th US president, propelled by optimism that his administration’s $1.9tn stimulus spending plan could help insulate the global economy from the damage wrought by coronavirus.

The benchmark S&P 500 index ended the day up 1.4 per cent in New York to a closing record, adding to the gains it enjoyed on Tuesday when Janet Yellen, Treasury secretary nominee, urged Congress to “act big” on stimulus.

About two-thirds of the companies listed on the index were positive in the session.

The technology-focused Nasdaq Composite rose 2 per cent to a record, boosted by a 16.9 per cent rise for Netflix after the video streaming service passed 200m subscribers in its latest earnings update and hinted at share buybacks.

The Netflix results provided support to those who have argued companies can grow into what look on some measures to be extended valuations.