Jobs Data Sends Major Indexes Flat Ahead of Opening Bell

Nonfarm payrolls data came in much lower than expected

Assistant Editor
Oct 8, 2021 at 9:16 AM
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Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) turned lower after a dismal jobs report, down 37 points at last glance. Nonfarm payrolls showed just 366,000 jobs added in August, upwardly revised from the earlier 235,000. September's data showed 194,000 jobs added, versus the anticipated 500,000. Investors are watching the data closely, as it will be factored in to the Federal Reserve's decisions regarding its bond-buying program. The unemployment rate, meanwhile, fell to 4.8%. Elsewhere, S&P 500 Index (SPX) futures are flat, while Nasdaq-100 (NDX) eyes a modest rise. 

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

  • Chipotle stock has a history of underperforming in October
  • Verizon rival looks ripe for bear notes. 
  • Plus, ALLO plummets on FDA news and J.P. Morgan Securities chimes in with coverage updates. 

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5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw more than 1.5 million call contracts traded on Thursday, compared to 818,687 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio rose to 0.52, and the 21-day moving average stayed at 0.50.
  2. Allogen Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:ALLO) is plummeting in premarket trading, down 35%. The U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) paused the company's cancer drug trials after a chromosomal abnormality surfaced in one of the patients. In response, the stock saw a slew of bear notes this morning, as Goldman Sachs and Stifel downgraded ALLO to "neutral" and "hold," respectively, alongside several price-target cuts. Year-to-date ALLO remains up 68%.
  3. J.P. Morgan Securities upgraded Oatly Group AB (NASDAQ:OTLY) to "overweight" from "neutral," saying the stock's potential upside outweighs its downside risk by a long shot. In electronic trading, OTLY is up 7.1%, looking to extend yesterday's 9.1% gain. 
  4. Sirius XM Holdings Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI) stock is down 1.1% before the bell, after J.P. Morgan Securities downgraded the satellite radio company to “neutral” from “overweight.” The analyst in coverage cited stagnating auto sales as a potential headwind going forward. SIRI ceded its year-to-date breakeven level last month amid September seasonality, and is only up 8% in the last 12 months.

  5. Today will bring average hourly earnings. 

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Asia, Europe Unpack Economic Data

Markets in Asia closed mostly higher in Friday’s session, as services activity data out of China moved back into positive territory. Meanwhile, Samsung noted upbeat operating profit for the quarter that ended in September. In response, China’s Shanghai Composite closed up 0.7% on its first trading day after a week-long holiday, while South Korea’s Kospi sank 0.1%. The Nikkei in Japan finished up 1.3% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng added 0.6%.

European stocks are mixed this afternoon, as investors digest the latest U.S. jobs data and lower-than-expected trade balance of 13 billion euros out of Germany. At last check, London’s FTSE 100 is up 0.06%, Germany’s DAX is down 0.2%, and France’s CAC 40 is off 0.3%.

Trader: Sell These 8 Stocks in 2021

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