November is living up to its billing and already turning out to be an exceptionally productive month for the stock market.
Indeed, the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +2.94% was surging around 1,300 points, at last check, pushing the blue-chip index to its sharpest daily rally since March and near its first record close since Feb. 12.
The advance for the 124-year-old Dow industrials is a part of a powerful bullish swing higher that puts the benchmark on pace for its best six-session start to a month, up 11.7%, since 1939 and the best November gain so far since 1896, according to Dow Jones Market Data.
The S&P 500 SPX, +1.17% also was producing a similarly punchy rise on Monday, up 2.6%, which was putting the broad-market index in position to mark its best start to a month since 1939 and its best November rally thus far on record.
Monday’s sharp rally was being attributed to a coronavirus vaccine announcement by Pfizer PFE, +7.69% and German-based partner BioNTech BNTX, +13.91% proved better than expected at protecting people from COVID-19, raising the prospects for a healthier rebound from the worst of the deadly pandemic.
On top of the vaccine report, markets have been rising in recent days on the prospect that the projected winner of the U.S. presidential election, former Vice President Joe Biden, and a likely divided Congress, would result in a political backdrop that is felicitous for equity market gains over the longer term. That is because a divided government is viewed as one that would likely see few substantial, market-disruptive changes to the tax regime or financial regulations.
Historically, November is what is considered part of the best six-month stretch for equities, concluding at the end of April. Also, November tends to be the best month of the year, and that’s even more so during an election year.
“Since 1950, November is #1 DJIA and S&P 500 month in election years, according to data from Stock Trader’s Almanac. “Recent exceptions include November 2000 (undecided election) and 2008 (financial crisis),” the data provider wrote in a recent note.