Stocks and oil prices bounced back from Friday’s selloff, with investors betting the Omicron Covid-19 variant will cause less damage to the global economic recovery than initially feared.

The S&P 500 jumped 60.65 points, or 1.3%, to 4655.27, recouping some of its losses after the index suffered its worst one-day percentage decline in nine months. Friday’s selloff came after South Africa identified a fast-spreading strain of the coronavirus, which the World Health Organization named Omicron, and countries around the world responded with a fresh wave of travel restrictions.

The Nasdaq Composite advanced 291.18, or 1.9%, to close at 15782.83 on Monday, boosted by investor appetite for technology stocks. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 236.60, or 0.7%, to 35135.94.

Brent crude futures, the benchmark in global oil markets, rose 1% to settle at $73.44 a barrel. They tumbled more than 10% Friday, in their largest one-day percentage decline since April 2020.

Scientists and vaccine makers are investigating Omicron, a Covid-19 variant with around 50 mutations, which has been detected in many countries after spreading in southern Africa. Here’s what we know as the U.S. and others implement travel restrictions. Photo: Fazry Ismail/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

“Friday was a panic selloff,” said

Ipek Ozkardeskaya,

senior analyst at Swissquote Bank. “Traders have had time to sit back and breathe a bit,” she added, noting that trading volumes were lower over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, likely exacerbating declines. 

Investors are awaiting more clarity on the transmissibility and severity of the Omicron variant and data on how well it can be contained by existing vaccines. Renewed travel bans and coronavirus restrictions could threaten the global recovery. In some of the tougher moves so far, Israel has banned foreigners from entry and Japan has said it would close its borders to foreign visitors until more information about the new variant is available.

President Biden said Monday that Omicron was “not a cause for panic.” The administration is working with drug companies to develop contingency plans for vaccines or boosters in case they are needed to fight the new variant, he said. Some analysts expect the economic impact of Omicron to be limited as vaccine manufacturers update their shots to combat it. 

Investors sold out of government bonds Monday.


Richard Drew/Associated Press

“There’s less likelihood we see sustained downside from something like a variant because our ability to adapt to it is higher than it was,” said

Hani Redha,

a portfolio manager at PineBridge Investments. “The ability to tailor vaccines makes a huge difference.”

Moderna shares shot up $38.88, or 12%, to $368.51, adding to their gains after the stock surged more than 20% on Friday. The biotech company has said it is working to rapidly advance an Omicron-specific booster candidate. U.S.-listed shares of BioNTech, which produces a Covid-19 vaccine with


added $14.52, or 4.2%, to $362.52 on Monday.

Some travel and leisure stocks rebounded after steep losses on Friday.

Royal Caribbean Group

shares added $1.91, or 2.8%, to $69.89 while shares of rival cruise operator Carnival rose 21 cents, or 1.2%, to $18.16. But

Delta Air Lines


American Airlines Group

both closed slightly lower after swinging between gains and losses.

Technology was the best-performing sector of the S&P 500.




both rose more than 2%.


fell $1.29 per share, or 2.7%, to $45.78 after the social-media company said Jack Dorsey was stepping down as CEO, effective immediately, and being replaced by

Parag Agrawal,

who was previously Twitter’s chief technology officer.

Bitcoin rebounded after the largest cryptocurrency was pummeled by Friday’s selloff. The dollar value of bitcoin rose 3.6% from its 5 p.m. ET level Sunday to about $58,300. Its gains boosted cryptocurrency exchange


Global, whose shares rose $16.20, or 5.3%, to $319.39.

Investors sold U.S. government bonds, which are viewed as safe assets to hold, pushing up yields. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note ticked up to 1.529% from 1.484% Friday. 

Overseas, the pan-continental Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.7%.

Major stock indexes in Asia fell. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index dropped 1.6% to its lowest closing level in a month and a half. The benchmark declined 2.5% Friday.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index and South Korea’s Kospi each fell around 1%, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index fell 0.5% after the country tightened border controls over the weekend.

Frances Yoon and Rebecca Feng contributed to this article.

Write to Caitlin Ostroff at and Frances Yoon at

Copyright ©2021 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 87990cbe856818d5eddac44c7b1cdeb8

Read More