Here are the most important news, trends and analysis that investors need to start their trading day:
- Dow set to rise after Friday's record close
- Bitcoin takes breather after surge to more than $60,000
- Treasury yields near 1-year highs ahead of Fed meeting
- Biden and Harris to sell $1.9 trillion Covid relief plan
- Fauci warns against lifting U.S. restrictions right now
1. Dow set to rise after Friday's record close
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U.S. stock futures were mixed Monday as the 10-year Treasury yield held around 1.62%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 closed at record highs Friday. The Nasdaq fell modestly as recently slumping tech stocks continued to fight rising bond yields. However, the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq all posted strong weekly gains. Ahead of Monday's open, the Nasdaq was up more than 3.3% for the year. The Dow and S&P 500 were up 7% and almost 5%, respectively in 2021.
2. Bitcoin takes breather after surge to over $60,000
Bitcoin dropped 6% on Monday, after jumping Saturday to another all-time high — this time above $60,000. The world's biggest cryptocurrency has just about doubled this year. It's soared more than 1,000% over the past 12 months. Bitcoin's market value climbed back above $1 trillion last week. The incredible rally has been driven by increased adoption by larger institutional investors and firms as well as speculative demand.
3. Treasury yields near 1-year highs ahead of Fed meeting
While the 10-year Treasury yield was actually a bit lower Monday morning, it was only slightly below its more than one-year high of 1.642% on Friday. The rapid rise in yields this year has traders wondering whether the Federal Reserve may be losing control of the direction of interest rates. The Fed's two-day March meeting begins Tuesday, with questions about how long near-zero rates and extraordinarily easy Covid monetary policy can last.
4. Biden and Harris to sell $1.9 trillion Covid relief plan
The Fed is expected to forecast better economic growth after President Joe Biden last week signed the $1.9 trillion package of fiscal measures designed to help Americans, U.S. businesses and state and local governments dealing with the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris hit the road this week to sell the Covid stimulus plan, which includes up to $1,400 in direct payments to many people.
5. Fauci warns against lifting U.S. restrictions right now
White House Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci is warning state leaders that the nation's battle with the coronavirus is still "not in the end zone." He urged Americans to adhere to public health measures despite the ramp-up of vaccinations, pointing to new infection spikes in Europe as a cautionary tale of relaxing too soon. As of Sunday night, the CDC reported that nearly 37.5 million people in the U.S. were fully vaccinated — more than 11% of the nation's population of over 330 million.
— The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report. Get the latest on the pandemic with CNBC's coronavirus blog.