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The Dow Jones Industrial Average was set to open 150 points lower Friday as difficulties in Washington over reaching a new Covid-19 stimulus package before the end of the year outweigh Pfizer's vaccine taking a step closer to FDA emergency use approval. On Friday morning, the FDA's commissioner said the agency is "rapidly" working toward such authorization, an unusual announcement before a finalized decision.
While the Dow and S&P 500 saw modest declines Thursday and Nasdaq had a slight gain, all three were tracking to snap multiweek winning streaks. However, heading into Friday trading on Wall Street, the Dow and S&P 500 were less than 1% away from their record high closes from earlier this week, and the Nasdaq was 1.4% away from its record close earlier in the week.
With the FDA signaling emergency use authorization of the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine, the agency also said Friday that it has "notified the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Operation Warp Speed, so they can execute their plans for timely vaccine distribution." The FDA's vaccine advisory committee on Thursday recommended emergency use authorization. The FDA doesn't have to follow the advisory committee's recommendation, but the agency often does. U.S. officials say they are prepared to distribute the vaccine within 24 hours of authorization. The FDA's advisory panel is set to meet next week on whether to recommend emergency use of Moderna's vaccine, which like Pfizer's requires two shots.
The House has adjourned until at least Tuesday, pending any agreements on pandemic aid and full-year government funding as efforts on each remained elusive. According to NBC News, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's staff informed stimulus negotiators that GOP senators were unlikely to support a $908 billion bipartisan proposal. Meanwhile, a one-week funding measure that passed the House needs to clear the Senate before midnight to avoid a partial government shutdown.
Shares of Dow-stock Walt Disney surged more than 7% in Friday's premarket to about $167 each, one day after the entertainment giant said its streaming service, Disney+, now has 86.8 million subscribers. The company expects between 230 million and 260 million subscribers to Disney+ by 2024. Disney announced a $1 price hike for Disney+ in the U.S. to to $7.99 per month. The company unveiled a slate of new streaming shows, including Marvel and Star Wars series for Disney+ and drama series and Kardashians content on Hulu. Disney hit an intraday all-time high of $157.46 per share Wednesday.
In a blockbuster week of IPOs, home rental marketplace Airbnb skyrocketed more than 112% in Thursday's debut after food delivery service DoorDash surged over 85% on its first trading day Wednesday. While both stocks were giving back a fraction of those gains in Friday's premarket, their market values were off the charts. Airbnb's market cap of about $86.5 billion far exceeds those of hotel chains Marriott and Hilton. DoorDash's $59 billion market cap as of Thursday's close was nine times higher than rival GrubHub.
— The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report. Follow all the developments on Wall Street in real time with CNBC Pro's live markets blog. Get the latest on the pandemic with our coronavirus blog.