On The Money: Stocks fall as COVID-19 fears rattle market | Schumer sets infrastructure showdown | Dems struggle to sell agenda

On The Money: Stocks fall as COVID-19 fears rattle market | Schumer sets infrastructure showdown | Dems struggle to sell agenda

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THE BIG DEAL—Stocks fall as COVID-19 fears rattle travel, leisure companies: The stock market took steep losses Monday as concerns about the rebound from the coronavirus recession rattled investors. 

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed with a loss of 725 points Monday, falling 2.1 percent, largely due to losses among airlines, cruise lines, construction firms, energy producers and financial services companies. 
  • The S&P 500 fell 1.6 percent and the Nasdaq fell 1.1 percent, also taking losses in the same sectors.

The bigger picture: Monday’s selloff, the steepest since January, appeared to be driven by concerns about COVID-19 surging and derailing the recovery from the pandemic-driven recession. Companies taking the biggest losses Monday are among those most dependent on resurgent consumer activity, travel, large gatherings and social events.

  • Boeing, Dow, American Express, Goldman Sachs, Marriott, Carnival Cruise Line, and Marathon Oil were among the companies taking the heaviest losses Monday and were all down between 4 and 7 percent at the depth of the sell-off.
  • At the same time, consumer staples, big box stores, pharmaceutical and medical supply companies all rallied on the prospect of higher case levels and retreating consumers. Peloton Interactive, Moderna, Etsy, Quest Diagnostics and Kroger all posted gains Monday morning.

"Fears over peak economic data and a resurgence in COVID cases has the market on edge today. Of course, don't forget that the S&P 500 hasn't had a 5% correction since October, so you could say we are more than due for some turbulence," said Ryan Detrick, chief market strategist for LPL Financial in a Monday statement.

I break it down here.

LEADING THE DAY

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Schumer sets up Wednesday infrastructure showdown: Majority Leader Charles SchumerChuck Schumer84 mayors call for immigration to be included in reconciliation Senate infrastructure talks on shaky grounds Could Andrew Cuomo — despite scandals — be re-elected because of Trump? MORE (D-N.Y.) moved on Monday to tee up a key test vote for a bipartisan infrastructure bill despite GOP warnings that they'll block the Senate from moving forward.

Schumer's maneuvering sets up the test vote for Wednesday, where he'll need 60 votes — including the support of at least 10 Republicans in order to advance a shell bill, into which senators would swap the text of the bipartisan deal once it is finished.

"That vote on cloture will take place on Wednesday," Schumer said from the Senate floor. "What we're talking about this week is a vote on whether or not to proceed to debate."

But Republicans have said that without a deal on the bipartisan package Schumer will fall short of being able to get the 60 votes needed to advance the shell bill.

Sen. John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneSenators scramble to save infrastructure deal GOP sees debt ceiling as its leverage against Biden Frustration builds as infrastructure talks drag MORE (S.D.), the No. 2 Senate Republican, warned that without the bipartisan group being finished by Wednesday, Schumer "is not going to get 60, let's put it that way."

The Hill's Jordain Carney breaks it down.

Democrats ramp up spending sales pitch: The standoff comes as Democrats are ramping up their sales pitch to voters as they bet big on government spending and lay the groundwork for their 2022 midterm message.

“We’re learning the value of simplicity. ... And so we’re getting better, but we still have a tendency to want to explain the policy as if we’re in negotiations with each other as opposed to talking about the value to regular people,” said Sen. Brian SchatzBrian Emanuel SchatzOn The Money: Stocks fall as COVID-19 fears rattle market | Schumer sets infrastructure showdown | Dems struggle to sell agenda The Hill's Morning Report - Surging COVID-19 infections loom over US, Olympics Democrats ramp up spending sales pitch MORE (D-Hawaii).

Carney has more here.

Read more: Democrats' spending priorities could cost more than advertised: analysis

ON TAP TOMORROW:

GOOD TO KNOW

  • As Democrats indicate that they want to tax polluter imports, two lawmakers are laying out a potential roadmap.
  • The recession caused by the coronavirus pandemic was the shortest economic downturn in modern U.S. history, a panel of economic experts declared Monday.
  • Republicans are seizing on rising inflation as they attempt to derail President Biden’s economic agenda and take back control of Congress in next year’s midterm elections.

ODDS AND ENDS

  • President Biden is putting new pressure on China by publicly attributing the wide-ranging Microsoft Exchange Server cyberattack to hackers affiliated with Beijing.
  • Internet service providers and their trade associations spent more than $230 million on lobbying and political donations during the 116th Congress as they influenced legislation to expand broadband access, according to a report released Monday.