Stocks Struggle for Direction as Wall Street Eyes Relief Bill

Dow futures are up over 87 points

Deputy Editor
Mar 8, 2021 at 9:09 AM
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Stock futures are starting the week mixed, as investors weigh the newly passed $1.9 trillion Covid-19 relief bill against continually rising bond yields. Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) are up 87 points, while the S&P 500 Index (SPX) is eyeing muted losses. The Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX), meanwhile is eyeing a dramatic pre-market pullback, dragged lower by the 10-year Treasury yield, which has added 3 basis points this morning to stand at 1.59% -- only slightly off Friday's high of 1.62%. 

The emergency relief bill is one catalyst for rising rates. Senate passed the bill on Saturday, while the Democratic-led House will be expected to give it the thumbs up it later this week. If all goes according to plan, President Joe Biden will sign the bill into law before March 14, when unemployment aid programs end. 

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

  • How this semiconductor giant turned heads after earnings. 
  • One Virgin Galactic chairman just sold his $213 billion stake, now what?
  • Plus, FB undergoes hiring bias investigation; BMBL hit with bull notes; and DIS pops on theme park reopening. 

futures march 8

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw more than 2.03 million call contracts traded on Friday, and 1.22 million put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio rose to 0.60 and the 21-day moving average moved to 0.45.
  2. Social media giant Facebook, Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) is undergoing a racial bias investigation by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) after four plaintiffs accused the company of biased hiring and promotions. The EEOC deemed the investigation "systemic," though no allegations of any wrongdoing have been brought against FB. The stock is flat ahead of the bell. 
  3. Dating app name Bumble Inc (NASDAQ:BMBL) is receiving plenty of analyst praise this morning. Both Stifel and Citi initiated coverage with a "buy" rating, while Cowen began with an "outperform" rating. Bumble stock is dropping, despite this slew of bull notes, last seen down 3% ahead of the bell. The security just went public in mid-February and peaked early on. Now, the stock is down over 8% this month. 
  4. It was announced that Walt Disney Co (NYSE:DIS) will be able to reopen its Disneyland theme park in California after being closed for over a year, starting April 1, at reduced capacity. Meanwhile, the media mogul's "Raya and the Last Dragon" movie rose to the top of the weekend box office, collecting $8.6 million in ticket sales, despite Cinemark's decision not to show the movie. DIS is up 2.6% ahead of the bell. 
  5. The week will begin quietly, with only wholesale inventories data on the docket. 

BuzzMarch8

Asian Markets Falter Despite Last Week's Jobs Data

Stocks in Asia finished the session lower, despite last week’s upbeat stateside jobs report which bolstered optimism surrounding a faster economic recovery. Chinese mainland markets suffered the most, with China’s Shanghai Composite and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng tumbling 2.3% and 1.9%, respectively. Elsewhere, South Korea’s Kospi fell 1%, while Japan’s Nikkei rounded out the region with a 0.4% loss.

European markets, meanwhile, are on the rise as U.S. lawmakers makes progress toward a $1.9 trillion Covid relief bill even as bond yields in the country continue to rise – which could force central banks to tighten policy sooner than expected. At last check, the London FTSE 100 is just below breakeven, down 0.01%, Germany’s DAX has added 1.3%, and France’s CAC 40 is 0.8% higher.

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