Today's Stock Market News & Events: 12/18/2020

Today's market-moving economic data and earnings schedule

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    All major stock market indexes managed to log record closes yesterday after brushing off the dismal jobless claims update as Congress rushed to hammer out a $900 stimulus package before the end of the year. Outside of world of Wall Street, coronavirus cases are climbing faster than ever before and investors are clearly concerned once more about virus-related restrictions across the country negatively impacting parts of the economy, specifically the labor market.

    The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI -30,303.37) increased 148.8 points on Thursday. The S&P 500 Index (SPX - 3,722.48) added 21.3 points for the day and the Nasdaq Composite (IXIC - 12,764.75) added 106.6 points yesterday. The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX - 21.93) lost 0.6 point during yesterday's trading session.

    The stock market schedule finally slows down today. November's leading economic indicators will be reported, but that is all that is on the schedule for today. 

    For your convenience, we have rounded up the companies slated to release earnings today, December 18:

    Apogee Enterprises, Inc. (NASDAQ:APOG -- $32.13) designs and develops glass and metal products and services. Apogee Enterprises will report its third-quarter earnings before the bell today.

    Darden Restaurants, Inc. (NYSE:DRI -- $118.62) owns and operates full-service restaurants. Darden Restaurants will report its second-quarter earnings of 2021 before the bell today.

    Winnebago, Inc. (NYSE:WGO -- $59.54) manufactures and sells recreation vehicles and marine products. Winnebago will report its first-quarter earnings of 2021 before the bell today.

    NIKE, Inc. (NYSE:NKE -- $140.50) designs, develops, markets, and sells athletic footwear, apparel, equipment, and accessories. NIKE will report its second-quarter earnings of 2021 after the market closes today.

    Here is a quick recap of how Thursday's earnings calls played out:

    Accenture plc (NYSE:ACN -- $247.45) provides strategy and consulting, interactive, and technology and operations services. Earnings per share rose 3.83% over the past year to $2.17, which beat the estimate of $2.05. Revenue of $11,762,000,000 higher by 3.55% from the same period last year, which beat the estimate of $11,360,000,000.

    General Mills, Inc. (NYSE:GIS -- $58.92) manufactures and markets branded consumer foods. Earnings per share increased 11.58% year over year to $1.06, which beat the estimate of $0.97. Revenue of $4,719,000,000 rose by 6.74% year over year, which beat the estimate of $4,650,000,000.

    Jabil, Inc. (NYSE:JBL -- $41.06) provides manufacturing services and solutions. Earnings per share increased 52.38% over the past year to $1.60, which beat the estimate of $1.27. Revenue of $7,833,000,000 rose by 4.36% year over year, which beat the estimate of $7,030,000,000.

    Sanderson Farms, Inc. (NASDAQ:SAFM -- $141.09) produces, processes, markets, and distributes fresh, frozen, and prepared chicken products. Earnings per share rose 232.63% over the past year to $1.26, which beat the estimate of $0.12. Revenue of $940,023,000 higher by 3.70% year over year, which beat the estimate of $900,090,000.

    Worthington Industries, Inc. (NYSE:WOR -- $52.53) is a metals manufacturing company. Earnings per share were up 37.68% year over year to $0.95, which beat the estimate of $0.68. Revenue of $731,092,000 declined by 11.67% year over year, which beat the estimate of $688,300,000.

    FedEx Corporation (NYSE:FDX -- $288.81) provides transportation, e-commerce, and business services. Earnings per share rose 92.43% year over year to $4.83, which beat the estimate of $4.01. Revenue of $20,563,000,000 rose by 18.70% from the same period last year, which beat the estimate of $19,460,000,000.

    Scholastic Corporation (NASDAQ:SCHL -- $26.55) publishes and distributes children's books. Earnings per share fell 44.17% year over year to $1.15, which missed the estimate of $1.38. Revenue of $406,200,000 declined by 31.98% year over year, which missed the estimate of $528,000,000.

    Steelcase, Inc. (NYSE:SCS -- $13.66) manufactures and sells integrated furniture settings, user-centered technologies, and interior architectural products. Earnings per share fell 82.61% over the past year to $0.08, which beat the estimate of $0.03. Revenue of $617,500,000 declined by 35.35% year over year, which missed the estimate of $628,800,000.

    Looking ahead to next week, the stock market will be relatively quiet in the days leading up to Christmas, though there will still be a handful of economic indicators for investors to evaluate heading into the final week of the year. The holiday-shortened week will feature core durable goods, personal income, core inflation, and new and existing home sales data -- all due before the market closes early on Thursday. In addition, traders can expect the weekly jobless claims update, as well as the consumer confidence and sentiment indexes. All economic dates listed here are tentative and subject to change.

    The U.S. stock market will have a shortened schedule next week, with only three and a half trading days. On Thursday, December 24, the stock market hours will be 9:30 a.m. through 1:00 p.m. ET in observance of Christmas Eve. On Friday, December 25, the stock market will be closed in observance of Christmas.

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