Stock Futures Stagnate as Retail Sales Disappoint

The S&P is still struggling to overtake its February high

Deputy Editor
Aug 14, 2020 at 9:26 AM
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Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) are down about 80 points ahead of the open, after retail sales rose rose just 1.2% in July, compared to an estimated increase of 2.3%. Sales excluding autos, however, topped forecast. Meanwhile, futures on the S&P 500 Index (SPX) are still struggling to overtake their February peak, while Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) futures are hovering just above fair value.

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

  • Chegg stock is in rally mode, and its options are cheap.
  • Why call traders are flocked to PG&E stock.
  • Plus, AMAT reported a solid earnings beat; AutoZone is hiring 20,000 workers; and Tesla stock just got an upgrade.

Futures Chart August 14

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw over 1.5 million call contracts traded on Thursday, and 686,363 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio dropped to 0.46, and the 21-day moving average stayed at 0.47.
  2. Applied Materials, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMAT) is up 3.7% ahead of the open, after the Apple (AAPL) supplier announced fiscal third-quarter earnings and revenue that beat Wall Street's estimates. The semiconductor manufacturer also gave an upbeat forecast regarding its current quarter, and at least eight analysts hiked their price targets for AMAT.
  3. More than 20,000 jobs are opening up at AutoZone, Inc. (NYSE:AZO) in the U.S. as demand from both retail and commercial customers rebounds. Ahead of the open, AZO is down 0.3% ahead of the open. 
  4. Tesla Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) was upgraded to "equal weight" from "underweight" by Morgan Stanley. The analyst applauded Tesla's growth prospects for its electric vehicle battery supply business. At last check, TSLA is up 2.4%. 
  5. Investors will comb through ample economic data, including unit labor costs, industrial production, consumer sentiment, and business inventories today. 

buzz aug 14

Asian Markets Eye "Phase One" Trade Deal; Europe Struggles to Slow COVID-19 Spread

Stocks in Asia were a mixed bag after today’s session, with investors eyeing the stalled second stimulus bill in the U.S. China’s Shanghai Composite added 1.2%, with officials from Washington and Beijing set to review their “phase one” trade deal soon. Meanwhile, South Korea’s Kospi dropped 1.2%, Japan’s Nikkei gained 0.2%, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng dropped 0.2%.

In Europe, shares are struggling midday, after the U.K. imposed a 14-day quarantine rule on all arrivals from France, adding the country to the list in an effort to slow the uptick in coronavirus cases. Following the news, travel stocks dropped significantly. London’s FTSE 100 is down 1.6%, while the French CAC 40 and German DAX are down 1.8% and 0.9%, respectively.




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