Index Futures Pointed Lower on Chinese Economic Data

Investors are also worried the central bank may soon taper off bond purchases

Digital Content Manager
Aug 16, 2021 at 9:13 AM
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Stock futures are pointed lower this morning, after fresh data out of China showed a worse-than-expected slowdown in economic growth. Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) futures are eyeing a 122-point drop this morning, while futures on the S&P 500 Index (SPX) are looking to dip into the red as well, with both benchmarks pacing to snap their winning streaks. Futures on the Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) are lower too, as investors grow concerned that the central bank could announce the tapering of bond purchases in September, and reduce buying a month later.

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

  • Can this food and drug retailer extend its record highs?
  • Domino's Pizza stock could enjoy a shift in analyst sentiment.
  • Plus, CMG slammed with downgrade; Oatly stock brushes off quarterly losses; and why HNST earned an upgrade.

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5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw more than 1.8 million call contracts traded on Friday, compared to 1 million put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio rose to 0.57 and the 21-day moving average jumped to 0.53.
  2. Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. (NYSE: CMG) is up 0.6% in electronic trading, despite receiving a downgrade from Raymond James to "outperform" from "strong buy." The analyst noted the company's valuation, after shares added 37% over the last six weeks. The security just notched an Aug.5, all-time high of $1,912.75, and sports a roughly 58% year-over-year lead.
  3. The shares of Oatly Group (NASDAQ:OTLY) are up 3% ahead of the bell, brushing off a wider-than-expected second-quarter loss, as well as a revenue miss. However, the company said it was able to work out Covid-19 and manufacturing issues, and that it is currently expanding its manufacturing capacity. Quarter-to-date, OTLY remains off 31%.
  4. Consumer goods concern Honest Company Inc (NASDAQ:HNST) is down 1% before the open, after the company earned an upgrade from Guggenheim to "buy" from "neutral." The firm highlighted the company's valuation, after the security fell more than 28% on Friday to an all-time low of $10, following worse-than-expected second-quarter losses. Over the last quarter, HNST has shed 37.8%.
  5. The week kicks off with the Empire State manufacturing index.

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Chinese Economic Data Weighs on Global Markets

Stocks in Asia pulled back today, as economic data out of China saw retail sales in the country rise by 8.5% -- well below the 11.5% forecasted by analysts. Also weighing on bourses is China’s industry production data that grew at a slower-than-expected rate in July. In response, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.8%, while China’s Shanghai Composite finished just above breakeven, adding 0.03%. In addition, gross domestic product (GDP) readings in Japan showed growth of 0.3% in the second quarter, which was slightly higher than estimates; however, losses from Fast Retailing and SoftBank Group led the Nikkei lower, with the index losing 1.6% on the day. South Korea’s Kospi was closed today for holiday.

Europe markets are falling at midday, following the release of lackluster economic data out of Asia. Elsewhere, the geopolitical scope is focused on Afghanistan, where Taliban insurgents took over the capital city of Kabul following a mass exodus of U.S. and coalition forces. In response, London’s FTSE 100 is down 1.2%, France’s CAC 40 has shed 0.9%, and the German DAX is off 0.5%.

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