Markets News & Opinions

Dow Rises to Start the Week as China Leads Tepid Global Recovery

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose on Monday, as investors monitored Chinese economic data and the latest stimulus talks in Washington.

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose by as much as 105 points on Monday.
  • China’s economy grew less than forecast in the third quarter but still showed signs of recovery.
  • Stimulus talks between Democrats and Republicans continue this week.

The Dow and broader U.S. stock market traded higher on Monday, as investors remained cautiously optimistic about the global economic recovery following China’s latest GDP reading.

Dow, S&P 500, Nasdaq Rise

All of Wall Street’s major indexes traded in positive territory, mirroring a positive pre-market for stock futures. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose by as much as 105 points before paring gains.

After eking out narrow gains last week, the Dow Jones Industrial Average opened higher on Monday. | Chart: Yahoo Finance

The broad S&P 500 Index of large-cap stocks gained 0.2%, The technology-focused Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 0.3%.

Most primary sectors tracked by the S&P 500 reported gains. Consumer discretionary stocks were the best performers, followed by healthcare and information technology.

Chinese Economy Gains Momentum

China’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic is picking up speed, as the world’s second-largest economy looks poised to avoid recession this year.

Beijing reported Monday that gross domestic product–the value of all goods and services produced in the economy–grew 4.9% annually in the third quarter. Although smaller than the 5.2% gain analysts were expecting, the reading was a notable improvement from the 3.2% China recorded in the second quarter.

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“Economic growth of the first three quarters shifted from negative to positive,” China’s National Bureau of Statistics said.

In a flurry of economic releases Monday, China said retail sales grew 3.3% annually in September. Industrial production rose 6.9% over the same period. Fixed asset investment edged up 0.8% annually in the year to September.

Altaf Kassam of State Street Global Advisors told The Wall Street Journal:

If you are looking at the consumer numbers, the manufacturing numbers, they’re still very strong coming out of China. That’s starting us off on a positive tone, and we think that’s a theme that’s going to continue.

The United States will release its first estimate of Q3 GDP data later this month. The latest Atlanta Fed estimate shows the economy rebounding 35.2% annually between July and September.

Analysts believe a second round of direct stimulus to Americans is necessary to keep the economic recovery alive. Congress is expected to debate the matter this week after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi set a Tuesday deadline for a stimulus vote.

Last modified: October 19, 2020 2:09 PM

Sam Bourgi

Financial Editor of, Sam Bourgi has spent the past decade focused on economics, markets, and cryptocurrencies. His work has been featured in and cited by some of the world's leading newscasts, including Barron's, CBOE, Yahoo Finance, and Forbes. Sam is based in Ontario, Canada and can be contacted at or at LinkedIn.