Stock Futures Quiet as Economic Data Rolls In

Weekly jobless claims finished higher than anticipated

Sep 16, 2021 at 9:17 AM
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Despite yesterday's rebound, stock futures are once more eyeing a muted open. The lackluster price action comes even after August retail sales data showed a surprise gain in last month despite rising virus-related fears. However, weekly jobless claims for last week were higher than expected, with 332,000 filings on the books. At last check, futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) are just above breakeven, while S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) futures are swimming in red ink.

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

  • SAGE Therapeutics stock pops on FDA fast-track designation. 
  • Chinese regulators take aim at gambling names.
  • Plus, Beyond Meat's bear note; DoorDash's bull note; and two casino stocks reeling from regulation talks.

Futures Chart September 16

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw more than 1.6 million call contracts traded on Wednesday, compared to 802,639 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio fell to 0.49 and the 21-day moving average stayed at 0.51.
  2. Alternative meat concern Beyond Meat Inc (NASDAQ:BYND) is off 3.1% ahead of the open, after Piper Sandler downgraded the stock to "underweight" from "neutral." The firm noted that while "Beyond is an early leader in plant-based meat," it believes upcoming revenue reports will miss expectations. Year-over-year, Beyond Meat stock is down 24.4%.
  3. DoorDash Inc (NYSE:DASH), meanwhile, is up 2.5% in electronic trading, after Bank of America upgraded the food delivery app to "buy" from "neutral," and raised its price target to $255 from $190. Bank of America cited the company's bullish 2021 estimates, and called its five-year growth opportunities "robust."  DoorDash stock has added 47% in 2021.
  4. Casino concerns Wynn Resorts, Limited (NASDAQ:WYNN) and Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE:LVS) are down 3% and 2.6%, respectively, before the opening bell, as Chinese regulators continue to ponder the strict restrictions on Macao's gaming industry. In response, JPMorgan downgraded both securities to "neutral" from "overweight." In the last six months, WYNN has shed 38.3% while LVS is down 42.3%.
  5. The bulk of this week's economic data is slated for today, including business inventories reports and the Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index.

OV Buzz Chart Sept 16

Asian Stocks Fall on Increased Gaming Scrutiny 

Asian markets settled firmly lower on Thursday, as casino stocks continued to plummet in response to Macao’s 45-day public gaming consultation, which kicked off earlier this week and could lead to more restrictions. Pacing the laggards was Hong Kong’s Hang Seng, which shed 1.5%, followed by China’s Shanghai Composite’s 1.3% dip. Elsewhere, South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.7%, while Japan’s Nikkei was 0.6% lower.

European markets, meanwhile, are higher, breaking away from the cautious sentiment seen across the globe. Investors are keeping an eye on the latest U.S. inflation data, and digesting a shakeup in U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Cabinet, after he replaced several senior ministers and called on government to address income inequality spurred by the pandemic. At last check, France’s CAC 40 is up 1.1%, the German DAX is 0.5% higher, and London’s FTSE 100 sports a 0.4% lead.

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