Stock Futures Lower on Dismal Stimulus Progress

U.S. officials say Iran and Russia are looking to interfere with the election

Deputy Editor
Oct 22, 2020 at 9:25 AM
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Stock futures are marginally lower this morning, as investors remain uncertain about the likelihood of additional stimulus and the U.S. election. Yesterday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell discouraged U.S. President Donald Trump's administration from agreeing to a bill, while House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's deputy chief of staff, Drew Hammill, said in a tweet that "Today's conversation brings us closer to being able to put pen to paper to write legislation." However, a tweet from U.S. President Donald Trump poured cold water on Hammill's reassurance a little later in the evening.  

As a result, futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) are down nearly 50 points, while S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) futures are both below fair market value. Elsewhere, investors are poring over another round of weekly jobless claims, which totaled 787,000 -- marking the first time since March that claims came in below 800,000.

A slew of positive earnings reports are keeping losses in check, too, including upbeat reports from Tesla (TSLA) and Coca-Cola (KO). However, futures faced further pressure, after U.S. officials said Iran is taking steps to interfere with the U.S. presidential election, while Russia has obtained American voter information.

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

  • There's a lot to love about Bilibili stock.
  • A tried and true bull signal bodes well for this gold stock.
  • Plus, Tesla notches fifth consecutive quarterly profit; General Motors sold out of its new truck; and Exxon is detailing planned job cuts.

Futures Chart October 22

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw more than 1.4 million call contracts traded on Wednesday, and 735,167 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio fell to 0.50 and the 21-day moving average slipped to 0.47. 
  2. Electric car manufacturer Tesla Inc (NASDAQ:TLSA) is up 3.2% in pre-market trading, after the company reported third-quarter earnings and revenue that topped Wall Street's estimates. This marked Tesla's fifth consecutive quarterly profit, and helps explain the equity's meteoric 726.8% year-over-year rise. 
  3. General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) unveiled a new GMC Hummer electric pickup truck earlier this week, and the car manufacturer just announced that it's sold out of the first year's worth of production. GM is flat ahead of the bell, but up 20.9% for the current quarter.
  4. Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) is up 0.03% before the open, after its CEO Darren Woods said in an email, seen by Reuters, that it is "very close" to delineating job cuts in the U.S. and Canada. XOM has had a rough go of it on the charts, shedding 52.5% in 2020.
  5. Things are picking up today, with initial and continuous jobless claims, as well as existing home sales. Also, AT&T (T), Intel (INTC), and Southwest Air (LUV) will step into the earnings confessional.

OV Buzz Chart Oct 22

Asian Stocks Lower on International Monetary Fund Downgrade

Stocks in Asia were mostly lower after the International Monetary Fund (IMF) downgraded its forecast for Asia-Pacific to negative 2.2% in 2020. Jonathan D. Ostry, the current Deputy Director, wrote in a blog post that the countries are experiencing a multispeed recovery from the region’s  “worst recession in living memory.” Today’s only winner, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng, added 0.1%. Meanwhile, Japan’s Nikkei fell 0.7%, China’s Shanghai Composite dropped 0.4%, and the South Korean Kospi lost 0.7%.

European markets are higher midday, as investors break down a slew of corporate earnings. The German DAX is up 0.2%, brushing off less-than-satisfactory consumer data, which shows forward-looking consumer confidence at negative 3.1 points for November in comparison to October’s 1.7. Elsewhere, London’s FTSE 100 and the French CAC 40 have gained 0.2% and 0.3%, respectively.



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