Stocks stabilize as investors brace for volatile week

Simon closes all malls through the end of March

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U.S. stocks rose Monday, as investors braced for another volatile week following a surge of infections from the deadly coronavirus pandemic.

The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 50 points, adding to recent gains after the blue-chip average notched its best week since 1938. The Standard & Poor’s 500 added 1%, as declines in energy stocks were offset by gains elsewhere in health care shares. Energy companies came under pressure as the price of oil briefly sank below $20 a barrel for the first time since 2002. 

Shares of Johnson & Johnson jumped 4% after the health care conglomerate said human testing of its experimental vaccine for the coronavirus will begin by September, and it could be available for emergency use in early 2021.

Traders say that stocks could get another boost over the coming days as money managers rebalance their portfolios toward stocks into the end of the quarter. But analysts caution that the recent rally could fade if coronavirus infections continue to climb. 

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