US stocks gained on Wednesday as President Trump said that he wants Congress to increase the stimulus checks included in the anticipated coronavirus relief deal to $2,000 from $600.
Trump made it official on a video announcement on Tuesday that he may veto the stimulus deal passed by Congress this week, expressing disappointment in the small stimulus checks and other spending initiatives attached to the bill.
U.S. stock indexes closed with modest gains Wednesday, as investors monitored the coronavirus vaccine rollout and its chances of reviving the economy, as well as President Trump’s opposition to recent spending packages passed by Congress.
The veto followed Trump’s criticism late Tuesday of a $900 billion relief bill passed by Congress on Monday, calling it an “unsuitable disgrace.” If Trump vetoes the aid bill or fails to sign it into law by a Dec. 28 deadline, it could throw into disarray months of negotiations on fiscal aid for unemployed Americans and troubled businesses. Trump is advocating for checks to households of $2,000 rather than the $600 that is currently a part of the new relief bill.
U.S. economic data out Wednesday was mixed. There were 803,000 applications for jobless benefits in the most recent week, a decline of 89,000 from the prior week though the labor market overall remains weak. Personal incomes slid 1.1% in November and consumer pending fell 0.4%, as did the Michigan Consumer Sentiment reading, and new home sales. But durable goods orders rose for a seventh straight month though signs of a slowdown are emerging.