Stock Futures Muted After Jobless Claims

The U.S. has now erased all job gains since the Great Recession

Managing Editor
Apr 23, 2020 at 9:13 AM
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Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) futures are muted this morning, as Wall Street unpacks the latest weekly jobless claims. Last week's report showed a 4.4 million increase in unemployment filings, topping the 4.3 million expectation and completely erasing all job gains since November 2009. Futures on the Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) and S&P 500 Index (SPX) are also struggling for direction, as oil prices continue on the upswing, with June-dated crude futures last seen 18.3% higher at $16.31 per barrel. 

Continue reading for more on today's market, including: 

  • Verizon stock eyes a key trendline ahead of earnings tomorrow.
  • Breaking down a big day from this FAANG stock.
  • Plus, Gap can't pay rent; ORLY revs its engine post-earnings; and AstraZeneca enters the COVID-19 treatment fray.

Stock Futures Chart April 23

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 1.1 million call contracts traded on Wednesday, and 782,670 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio fell to 0.66, and the 21-day moving average remained at 0.67.
  2. Gap Inc (NYSE:GPS) stock is down 3.5% in electronic trading, after the retailer suspended its rent payments due under leases, while warning cash flow may not be enough to continue funding operations. Gap stock is down 60% in 2020, and hit a record low of $5.26 on April 2.
  3. O'Reilly Automotive Inc (NASDAQ:ORLY) stock is up 2.7% before the bell, after the auto parts retailer reported first-quarter earnings or revenue that topped analyst forecasts. In response, CFRA and Wedbush adjusted their price targets to $470 and $380, respectively. 
  4. The shares of AstraZeneca plc (NYSE:AZN) are down 0.7% ahead of the open, but are still in focus after the drugmaker started trotting out its diabetes drug Farxiga as a possible coronavirus treatment. Late-stage testing has begun, with the drug hoping to reduce complications for patients with existing heart or kidney issues. AZN is up 30% year-over-year, and is facing off with its year-to-date breakeven level today.
  5. Today will feature the Markit manufacturing purchasing manager’s index (PMI), Markit services PMI, and new home sales. Intel (INTC), Domino's Pizza (DPZ), Eli Lilly (LLY), Hershey (HSY), Mattel (MAT), Southwest Air (LUV), Steven Madden (SHOO), and TAL Education (TAL) will throw their hats into the earnings ring. 

Buzz Chart April 23

Economic Data Weighing on Asian, European Markets

Asian markets were mixed on Thursday. The Nikkei in Japan lead the region with a 1.5% pop, while the Hong Kong Hang Seng added 0.4%. The Shanghai Composite lost 0.2%, though economists predicted in a Reuters poll that the country was on a slow road to recovery after its first quarterly contraction. Meanwhile, the South Korean Kospi added 1%, brushing off a 1.4% drop in gross domestic product (GDP), per the Bank of Korea’s advanced estimates. 

European markets are mostly lower midday, with attention focused on the HIS Markit Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), which dropped to 13.5 in April, while France and Germany’s April composite PMIs both hit record lows. At last check, the German DAX is down 0.1%, the French CAC 40 is up 0.4%, and the London FTSE 100 is 0.1% lower. 



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