Coronavirus live updates: U.S. cases surpass 1.8 million as concern over potential spread rises with turmoil

Coronavirus live updates: U.S. cases surpass 1.8 million as concern over potential spread rises with turmoil

U.S. stocks climbed Tuesday as investors looked past widespread protests to focus on the economy’s gradual emergence from coronavirus restrictions. The Dow Jones industrial average opened up more than 100 points.

More than 40 U.S. cities have enacted curfews in the wake of demonstrations that broke out after George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, died in police custody last week in Minneapolis. President Trump has urged governors to take an aggressive stand and threatened to deploy the military to quash protests.

Despite the unrest, U.S. markets have notched steady gains over the past week, with the Standard & Poor’s 500 index climbing in five of the past six trading sessions. The broad index added 0.3 percent at the opening bell. The Dow jumped 0.5 percent, or 130 points, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq composite was nearly flat.

“The U.S. riots, disturbing as they are, are also being discounted in the greater economic picture,” Jeffrey Halley, an analyst with OANDA, wrote in a commentary Tuesday. “Rightly so, without sounding insensitive, as they are unlikely to derail the expected U.S. rebound. Whether the lack of social distancing by protesters, police and soldiers comes back to bite them, is a story for another day.”

Although investors have found reasons for optimism, the path to economic recovery will be much longer than most had hoped, according to a report Monday. The Congressional Budget Office projects the pandemic will shrink the U.S. economy by roughly $8 trillion over the next decade due to reduced consumer spending and business closures.

Oil markets climbed on reports that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries was poised for another round of production cuts to guard against a global oil glut. Brent crude, the international benchmark, rose 2.1 percent to $39.14 a barrel. West Texas Intermediate crude, the U.S. benchmark, climbed 1.6 percent to $39.12 a barrel.

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