Stock Futures Cool Off From Record Closes

All three major benchmarks hit all-time highs yesterday

Deputy Editor
Mar 22, 2024 at 9:15 AM
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Stock futures are indicating a break from the flurry of record closes investors have enjoyed this week. But while the Fed-induced tailwinds may be over, all three major indexes are still headed for winning weeks. Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) futures are leading the losses with a 55-point deficit, while futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) and S&P 500 Index (SPX) sit more modestly in the red.

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

  • Thinking big: benefits and risks to trading LEAPS
  • Options bulls load up on Micron stock after earnings. 
  • Plus, China demand weighs on NKE; BBY upgraded; and FDX surging after earnings.

Futures March 22

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw more than 1.5 million call contracts and over 1 million put contracts exchanged Thursday. The single-session equity put/call ratio fell to 0.67, while the 21-day moving average remained at 0.71.
  2. Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE) stock is down 6.1% premarket, despite the retail giant posting better-than-expected fiscal third-quarter results, with slowing growth in China weighing on the athletic retailer's forecast. Nike stock has received a flood of bear notes in response, including a downgrade from RBC to "sector perform" from "outperform." Heading into today, NKE is down 7.1% in 2024. 
  3. Best Buy Co Inc (NYSE:BBY) stock is up 2.2% in electronic trading, after the electronics retailer received an upgrade from J.P. Morgan Securities to "overweight" from "neutral," with a price-target hike to $101 from $89. Year to date, Best Buy stock is up 2.4%. 
  4. The shares of FedEx Corp (NYSE:FDX) are up 10.5% before the bell, after the logistics company reported better-than-expected fiscal third-quarter earnings and revenue. No fewer than nine analysts lifted their price targets after the event, including Barclays to $350 from $310. On the charts, the stock has been rallying since mid February, up 4.7% since the start of the year. 
  5. Plenty of economic data still on tap to close out March. 


Nikkei Stays Hot Despite Spiking Inflation Data

Japan’s Nikkei was the only index in Asia that logged gains today, hitting a fresh record high above 41,000 before closing up 0.2%, even after the February inflation rate rose to 2.8% from 2.2%. Core inflation rose 0.8%, and the Bank of Japan (BoJ) said it expects to maintain a stable, 2% price target. Electric vehicle (EV) stocks like Li Motor (LI) are weighing on Hong Kong’s Hang Seng, the index settling down 2.2%. South Korea’s Kospi and China’s Shanghai Composite fell 0.2% and 1%, respectively.

Markets in Europe are mixed, with tech stocks still reeling from the interest rate buzz from the Bank of England (BoE), among others. In response, London’s FTSE 100 is up 0.4%, France’s CAC 40 is off 0.6%, and Germany’s DAX sits flat.


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