Memorial Day 2021 is here, bringing with it a long weekend for U.S. traders and others.
Since it became a national holiday in 1971, Memorial Day has been the last Monday of May, honoring those who died while serving in the U.S. military. In this case, Memorial Day falls on the last day of the month.
U.S. equities had a mostly dull week, with the
rising 1.2% and the
rising 0.9%. The S&P 500 and Dow ended the month 2% and 0.6% higher, respectively.
The majority of the action this week was in more speculative areas of the market: Cryptocurrencies were on a roller-coaster ride and shares of Reddit favorites
(ticker: AMC) and
(GME) surged. Shares of AMC closed out the week 116% higher.
Is the Stock Market Open on Memorial Day 2021?
Investors must wait until Tuesday to see if those trends continue. The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq are both closed on Monday, May 31. The same is true for U.S. over-the-counter markets. They’ll be back open on Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. EDT. U.S. bond markets will also be closed.
What About International Markets?
Since Memorial Day is an American holiday, international markets are mostly open. An exception is the London Stock Exchange, which will be closed for a bank holiday. The Toronto Stock Exchange, Shanghai Stock Exchange, Hong Kong stock exchange, and Tokyo Stock Exchange will be open.
How Will Covid-19 Impact the Holiday?
Memorial Day events were largely restricted or canceled last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said vaccinated Americans can travel and enjoy the holiday with other vaccinated friends.
“If you are vaccinated, you are protected, and you can enjoy your Memorial Day,” said CDC Director
Dr. Rochelle P. Walensky,
according to the New York Times. “If you are not vaccinated, our guidance has not changed for you, you remain at risk of infection. You still need to mask and take other precautions.”
While the U.S. is reopening, some things will be closed on Memorial Day because it’s a federal holiday. Mail, for example, will not be delivered.
Memorial Day is a popular weekend for sales at home-improvement retailers such as Lowe’s (LOW) and
(HD), which both benefited during the pandemic from consumers spending more on their homes.
How Have Stocks Performed Historically During the Week After Memorial Day?
The S&P 500 has posted gains 31 out of 50 times in the four-day weeks following Memorial Days since 1971. Its average percentage change is 0.5%. The Dow has gained 27 out of 50 times over the same period. It averaged a percentage change of 0.4%.
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