Big-box retailer Target was flat early today after reporting an 11.3 per cent jump in first-quarter revenues to US$19.6 billion.
Jim Paulsen, chief investment strategist at the Leuthold Group, said of Tuesday's mixed stock performance: The overall stock market gave back only a small part of its monster gain from [Monday] which really was encouraging being bolstered most of the day by the prospect of a period ahead of 'better news.' With [business] re-openings now the vogue [across] the country, it seems nearly assured that fundamental economic and earnings reports are headed for a period of improvement.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index (^STOXX) fell by more than 0.6%.
The benchmark index jumped more than 3% yesterday, boosted by promising early-stage data on a potential Covid-19 vaccine and US Federal Reserve (Fed) chair Jerome Powell's pledge to support the economy as needed until the current crisis has passed.More news: Whatcom health department reports 1 new coronavirus case and no deaths Tuesday
The U.S. stock market has hovered in a relatively tight trading range for the past three weeks, with the S&P 500 largely staying between 2800 and 3000.
Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average edged up 0.1%, suggesting the benchmark USA index may hold on to gains sparked by signs of progress toward making a vaccine for the coronavirus. Energy stocks also rose as the price of US crude oil closed above $30 a barrel for the first time in two months. Bond yields held steady and crude oil prices headed higher. The Nasdaq Composite was up 181.84 points, or 1.98%, at 9,366.95.
Home improvement chain Home Depot fell 1.9% as it missed quarterly profit estimates due to higher costs, while department store operator Kohl's Corp slumped 6.1% after reporting a bigger-than-expected loss. Oil production cuts are kicking in at the same time that demand is rising as the USA and other countries ease some of the restrictions aimed at stemming the spread of the outbreak. But Monday's strong start to the week reversed all of the market's losses so far this month. Brent crude, the worldwide standard, rose 37 cents to $35.18 a barrel.
The U.S. dollar inched up to 107.38 Japanese yen from 107.31 yen on Monday.More news: Danny Rose: Players are being treated like 'lab rats'
Bonds yields rose, another sign that pessimism was diminishing.
"We had a near 30% advance from the March 23 low to April 17, and then basically treaded water for a month as investors were expecting some sort of a retest of the prior low, which obviously did not come", Stovall said. However, concerns remain that the relaxing of stay-at-home mandates and the reopening of businesses could lead to another surge in infections, potentially ushering in another wave of shutdowns. According to the publication, Moderna's figures "don't mean much on their own" because critical information including detailed numbers and data tables was withheld.
Overnight in Asia, markets finished mixed. London's FTSE 100 (^FTSE) declined by 0.5%. Markets will fluctuate until there was more evidence that vaccines were effective, he added.
Information for this article was contributed by Alex Veiga of The Associated Press, by Vildana Hajric and Claire Ballentine of Bloomberg News and by staff members of The New York Times.More news: BBC launches experimental tool to watch programmes together during lockdown