Stock Futures Pointed Higher Ahead of Powell's Comments

Investors are also looking ahead to consumer sentiment data

Digital Content Manager
Aug 27, 2021 at 9:05 AM
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Stock futures are pointed higher this morning, as investors await Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell's speech at the Jackson Hole symposium for clues as to the central bank's next steps regarding stimulus. Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) futures are aiming for an 83-point pop, after yesterday snapping a four-day win streak. S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) futures are looking to bounce back, too, after tumbling from their record highs. Traders are also looking ahead to consumer sentiment data, and digesting news from Afghanistan, where explosions at Kabul airport killed at least 13 U.S. service members.

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

  • Options traders blasted this retail stock ahead of today's report.
  • Snowflake stock attracted several bull notes after its quarterly win.
  • Plus, Peloton's earnings report disappoints; Gap raises full-year outlook; Big Lots grappling with supply chain issues.

Futures 0827

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw more than 1.7 million call contracts traded on Thursday, compared to 966,642 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio rose to 0.55 and the 21-day moving average stayed at 0.53.
  2. Peloton Interactive Inc (NASDAQ:PTON) is down 7.4% in electronic trading, after the exercise staple posted disappointing fiscal fourth-quarter earnings. Plus, digital subscriptions came in below Wall Street's estimates. The security has been middling on the charts since pulling back from a Jan. 14 all-time high of $171.09, and is off 24.8% year-to-date.
  3. The shares of Gap Inc (NYSE:GPS) are surging today, up 6.7% ahead of the bell, after the apparel retailer's second-quarter earnings and revenue blew past analyst estimates. The firm attributed the strong results to its Old Navy and Athleta brands, and raised its full-year outlook. Shares are bouncing off a floor at the $26 level, and sport a 54.7% year-over-year lead.
  4. Discount retailer Big Lots, Inc. (NYSE:BIG) is plummeting before the open, last seen down 11.8%, after the company's second-quarter earnings and revenue fell short of Wall Street's expectations. Plus, comparable-store sales missed estimates as well, dipping 13.2%. Big Lots also noted it is struggling with supply chain and inflation issues. Quarter-to-date, the security has already shed more than 17%.
  5. Today brings personal income, consumer spending, trade in goods, and core personal consumption expenditures (CPE) data. Plus, the University of Michigan will release its final consumer sentiment index.

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European Stocks Dip on the Heels of French Sentiment Data

Stocks in Asia closed out the tumultuous week with mixed results. Investors in the region remain cautious, as the Federal Reserve readied to kick off its annual Jackson Hole symposium, where Chairman Jerome Powell is due to comment on the state of the economy and the central bank’s plans for exiting the measures it took during the Covid-19 pandemic. As a result, China’s Shanghai Composite and South Korea’s Kospi added 0.6% and 0.2%, respectively. Meanwhile, the Nikkei in Japan shed 0.4%, while the Hang Seng in Hong Kong pulled back a paltry 0.03%.

Traders in Europe are also eagerly awaiting news from the symposium, and the cautious sentiment has so far put a dent on markets in the region. French consumer confidence data showed a slight drop in August, per the INSEE. In addition, developments in Afghanistan continue to capture investors’ attention, namely after two explosions near the Hamid Karzai International Airport killed 13 U.S. service members. At last check, the German DAX is off 0.1%, London’s FTSE 100 is down 0.2%, and France’s CAC 40 is 0.3% lower.

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