Stock Futures Rise on Stellar Blue-Chip Earnings

A new Senate Republican relief bill includes $10 billion for the U.S. Postal Service

Deputy Editor
Aug 18, 2020 at 9:09 AM
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Earnings from two retail behemoths propped up stock futures this morning. Specifically, Walmart (WMT) and Home Depot (HD) are surging in pre-market trading, after each posed an earnings and revenue beat. The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is rising a modest 50 points at last check, while futures on the S&P 500 Index (SPX) are also marginally higher, finally on track to lock in fresh highs after the index yesterday once again fell short of a new intraday record. Additionally, Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) futures are hovering just above fair value as well, after Senate Republicans announced a plan to introduce a new COVID-19 relief plan which includes $10 billion for the United States Postal Service (USPS) and housing starts showed a 22.6% increase for July. 

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

  • Bull signal flashing for this semiconductor giant.
  • Amazon stock is a big target for options bulls.
  • Plus, Amazon is adding jobs in six major cities; Carnival is dealing with a ransomware attack; and more voluntary layoffs are in store for Boeing.

Futures Chart August 18

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw over 1.5 million call contracts traded on Monday, and 743,585 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio fell to 0.49, and the 21-day moving average stayed at 0.47.
  2., Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) announced it will add 3,500 jobs in six major cities, including 2,000 in New York. New employees in New York will work in the historic 5th Avenue building, which Amazon purchased from WeWork for a price tag reportedly to the tune of over $1 billion. As a result, AMZN is up 0.6% before the bell.
  3. Cruise line giant Carnival Corp (NYSE:CCL) is off 0.2% in pre-market trading, after the company said it's investigating a ransomware attack against one of its cruise brands. The personal data of both guests and employees are involved, though Carnival did not disclose which brand.
  4. More voluntary layoffs are on the table once again for employees of Boeing Co (NYSE:BA), according to a note from CEO Dave Calhoun. No specific reduction target was set, but the move comes as Boeing realigns its workforce to deal with the reduction in travel demand stemming from the coronavirus pandemic. Still, BA is up 0.2% ahead of the open.
  5. Economic data featured today includes housing starts and building permits. On the earnings end, Advance Auto Parts (AAP), Cree (CREE), Kohl's, La-Z-Boy (LZB), and Nvidia (NVDA) are on tap.



Asian Markets Mixed Amid More U.S Tensions


Stocks in Asia were a mixed bag after today’s session, with South Korea’s Kospi coming back from holiday to lead the losses – dropping 2.5% amid an uptick in coronavirus cases. Among the winners, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.08%, while China’s Shanghai Composite gained 0.4%. Continuing security measures against China, the U.S. Trump administration announced it will further tighten restrictions on China’s Huawei Technologies. Lastly, Japan’s Nikkei lost 0.2%.

In Europe, shares are modestly higher today, as travel stocks bounce back from the slide spurred by the U.K. adding France to its quarantine list. The French CAC 40 is up 0.3% while London’s FTSE 100 up 0.1%. Elsewhere, the German DAX has tacked on 0.8%.



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