Stock Futures Higher as Speculative Trading Fears Fade

Meanwhile, oil prices are modestly higher

Assistant Editor
Feb 2, 2021 at 9:19 AM
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Stocks are looking to extend yesterday's gains, with futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) up over 260 points at last check. S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq Composite (IXIC) futures are also confidently in the black before the bell, as investor concerns regarding last week's speculative trading mania begin to unwind. Wall Street is also poring over the latest corporate reports, with blue-chips Exxon Mobil (XOM) and Pfizer (PFE) in focus this morning.

Elsewhere, oil prices just hit an annual high ahead of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other major producers (OPEC+) meeting, in which output levels are expected to remain unchanged after being lifted in January. 

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

  • A look at Apple stock after last week's earnings report. 
  • Buy the dip on this drug stock.
  • Plus, motorcycle giant slips on shipment numbers; airliner sees potential furloughs; and UPS rises on a fourth-quarter earnings beat.

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5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw more than 2.1 million call contracts traded on Monday, and 901,138 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio fell to 0.42 and the 21-day moving average fell to 0.41.
  2. Harley-Davidson Inc (NYSE:HOG) is down 3.6% in before the bell, after the company's fourth-quarter report fell below estimates, with annual shipments hitting an over 20-year low. However, the motorcycle giant was quick to unveil a five-year turnaround plan. Coming into today, the equity is up 20.2% year-over-year. 
  3. The shares of American Airlines Inc (NASDAQ:AAL) are down 1% in electronic trading, after the company braced its employees for another potential furlough after payroll support for workers expires. So far in 2021, the equity is up 6.9% ahead of today's trading.
  4. United Parcel Service, Inc (NYSE:UPS) is up 4.7% ahead of the open, after the company reported better-than-expected earnings as well as revenue. Helping to boost profit was the surge in home deliveries amid the pandemic. Year-over-year, the security is up 50.9%. 
  5. In economic data, housing vacancies is due out today. 

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Stocks Rise in Asia, Europe Amid Pandemic Updates

Asian markets were higher on Tuesday, despite the Japanese government’s plans to extend the state of emergency covering Tokyo and other areas through March 7, in an effort to curb Covid-19 spread. Meanwhile, the United Kingdom is looking to join the Asia-Pacific trade bloc, also known as the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), with a British cabinet minister describing the potential trade pact as a “win-win” situation. In turn, the South Korean Kospi jumped 1.3%, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 1.2%. Elsewhere, the Japanese Nikkei was 1% higher, and China’s Shanghai Composite added 0.8%.

European stocks are higher as well, with incoming vaccine supplies giving investor sentiment a boost, after weeks of tensions between the European Union (EU) and drug makers over production issues. In terms of data, strict social distancing measures in the in the last quarter of 2020 led the euro zone economy to drop 0.7%, while Eurostat’s preliminary annual gross domestic product (GDP) reading indicates a 6.8% contraction. Still, France’s CAC 40 was last seen 1.7% higher, while the German DAX and London’s FTSE 100 are up 1.2% and 0.6%, respectively.

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