US stocks up in early trading, recovering some losses

TOKYO (AP) — Stocks are rebounding on Wall Street early Tuesday from their biggest drop since October a day earlier. Energy and materials sectors are leading the gains, with the S&P 500 up 0.4% at 9:40 a.m. Eastern time. Investors are following a run-off election for two senate seats in Georgia that will determine whether Republicans retain control of the Senate. Coronavirus cases are climbing at frightening rates, threatening to bring lockdown orders that would punish the economy. European indexes were mixed, while Asian stock markets were mostly higher. U.S. Treasury yields rose.

Global shares turned lower on Tuesday as more countries imposed restrictions on businesses and public life to cope with a stubborn increase in coronavirus infections.

Britain’s FTSE 100 fell 0.2% to 6,560 after the government toughened its lockdown measures and expanded them nationwide. France’s CAC 40 dropped 0.8% to 5,542, while Germany’s DAX shed 0.8% to 13,620. U.S. shares were set to drift lower with both Dow and S&P 500 futures down 0.2%.

With coronavirus cases climbing at frightening rates around the world, more lockdown orders to fight the pandemic threaten to undermine a global economic recovery, countering progress thanks to the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines.

Investors are also looking ahead to a run-off election for senatorial seats in the state of Georgia that will determine whether Republicans retain control of the Senate. The vote is expected to have a critical impact on the potential effectiveness of President-elect Joseph Biden.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 shed 0.4% to finish at 27,158.63 as the government was preparing to declare a state of emergency in Tokyo and several surrounding areas.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 inched down less than 0.1% to 6,681.90. South Korea’s Kospi jumped 1.6% to 2,990.57, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.6% to 27,649.86. The Shanghai Composite climbed 0.7% to 3,528.68.

On Monday, U.S. stocks pulled back from their recent record highs, as big swings returned to Wall Street at the onset of a year where the dominant expectation has been for a powerful economic rebound to sweep the world.

Investors have been hoping that vaccines will allow daily life around the world to slowly return to normal. That’s helped spark a recent recovery for stocks of travel-related businesses, smaller companies and other industries left behind for much of the pandemic.

In energy trading, benchmark U.S. crude gained 70 cents to $48.32 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It shed 92 cents on Monday. Brent crude, the international standard, rose 74 cents to $51.83 a barrel.

In currency trading, the dollar slipped to 102.94 Japanese yen from 103.13 yen late Monday. The euro cost $1.2268, up from $1.2249.