For its big indices, the New York Stock Exchange ended Thursday at new all-time highs, hoping for a compromise in Congress on a fresh $900 billion budget funding package. The Federal Reserve has also reassured that it plans to continue purchasing assets until the U.S. economy is fully restored. Initial Jobless Claims rose sharply in the United States for the second week in a row, putting more pressure to vote on a stimulus package.

The Dow Jones index added 0.49 percent to 30,303 points at the close, while the large S&P 500 index advanced 0.58 percent to 3,722 points, while the Nasdaq Composite Index, which is rich in technology and biotech stocks, increased 0.84 percent to 12,764 points. All three indexes finished at historically high levels. As the case with the Russell 2000 index, which monitors smaller stocks, the index rose by 1.30 percent to 1,978 points.

Investors look ahead to the U.S. Congress, where on Wednesday negotiators were hopeful about implementing a new strategy to help the U.S. economy, as coronavirus deaths in the country surpassed 300,000, threatening the economic recovery.

According to NBC News, the $900 billion proposal, drawn up by a coalition of Democratic and Republican senators, will provide individuals with direct assistance as well as unemployment benefits. It does on the other hand, not provides aid to states or municipalities and would not be accompanied by any corporate liability assurances. Discussions on the latter two issues have stalled in recent days, with Republicans declining to accept direct assistance to states and municipalities and seeking assurances for businesses suing in relation to the Covid-19 pandemic.

It is expected that the proposal would be implemented at the same time as the $1,400 billion government funding bill that must be adopted by midnight Friday, otherwise certain federal governments departments will no longer be funded and will have to stop working (“shutdown”).

Congressional leaders appeared hopeful at the conclusion of the last talks. Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell (whose support is essential) said that we are getting closer and closer to getting there. I am optimistic that we will reach a decision soon, he said, although he had opposed the proposals submitted to him so far.

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