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Stock Futures Today
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average today (Thursday) forecast a 77-point gain as traders prepare for Friday's jobs report. This morning, European stocks were trending upward ahead of the European Central Bank's meeting to discuss monetary policy.
Yesterday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rallied more than 293 points as tech stocks rebounded from yesterday's downturn. The markets hit their highest level yesterday after the U.S. Federal Reserve's Beige Book indicated that tightening in the labor markets could fuel wage gains in a number of U.S. sectors. ADP reported the U.S. private sector created 190,000 jobs in August, down from economist expectations of 201,000. Growing optimism over the U.S. economy has offset some concerns about stagnating growth in the Chinese economy.
Top News in the Stock Market Today
- The Stock Market Today: Investors will keep an eye on the weekly jobless claims report, the U.S. Payroll to Population report prepared by Gallup, an update on international trade, and a speech by Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank President Narayana Kocherlakota. The Chinese markets will be closed on Thursday and Friday as the nation commemorates the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. It marks a much-needed break after this week's downturn has rattled investors. Here's what you need to know about China's stock market hiatus.
- Jobs Report in Focus: After this morning's weekly job benefits report, investors are looking to tomorrow morning when the August jobs report is set for release. Everyone has the same question on their minds: Will the Fed raise interest rates sooner than later due to the new job numbers? Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald answers how investors should prepare for a rate hike, right here.
- Oil Outlook: Oil prices were flat this morning as gains on the NYSE offset concerns about rising inventory levels. This morning, WTI prices were off roughly 0.1% to reach $46.19. Meanwhile, Brent oil prices declined about 0.2% to $50.38 per barrel.
- Earnings Reports: Companies reporting earnings include Joy Global Inc. (NYSE: JOY), VeriFone Systems Inc. (NYSE: PAY), CIENA Corp. (Nasdaq: CIEN), Medtronic Plc. (NYSE: MDT), and Campbell Soup Co. (NYSE: CPB).
Pre-Market Movers in the Stock Market Today: PLNT, LCI, TSLA
- Pre-Market Movers No. 1, PLNT: Shares of Planet Fitness Inc. (NYSE: PLNT) were up more than 4% in pre-market hours after the company beat Wall Street earnings estimates during its first quarterly report as a public company. On Wednesday afternoon, the company reported adjusted per-share second-quarter earnings of $0.13, ahead of Wall Street estimates of $0.12.
- Pre-Market Movers No. 2, LCI: Shares of Lannett Company Inc. (NYSE: LCI) surged more than 16% this morning after the generic drug manufacturer planned to purchase Kremers Urban Pharmaceuticals Inc. for $1.23 billion. The target company is the U.S. generic drug unit of UCB SA. Following news of the deal, Lannett raised its 2016 and 2017 outlooks.
- Pre-Market Movers No. 3, TSLA: Shares of Tesla Motors Inc. (Nasdaq: TSLA) were up 3% on news the firm plans to begin delivery of its luxury Model X Signature series on Sept. 29.
Stocks to Watch Today: DIS, WMT, GERN
- Stocks to Watch No. 1, DIS: Shares of Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) are in focus on news that the company will today release its series of toys and merchandise tied to its upcoming blockbuster film "Star Wars: The Force Awakens." The merchandizing launch is part of a major brand awareness effort tied to the film, which will come out in December.
- Stocks to Watch No. 2, WMT: Retail giant Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) is moving up its holiday layaway program in order to get a jump-start on year-end demand. The company also announced plans to reopen five domestic stories the firm previously closed and were the center of a union complaint to the National Labor Relations Board. The union said these stores were closed in retaliation for employees attempting to organize.
- Stocks to Watch No. 3, GERN: Shares of Geron Corp. (Nasdaq: GERN) surged more than 20% yesterday on news the New England Journal of Medicine plans to publish two scientific papers that show positive trial results for the biotech company's drug Imetelstat. Biotech stocks remain hot, and one investor just made $1.1 billion in profits over the last eight months. Here's the story.
Today's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)
- MBA Mortgage Applications at 7 a.m.
- Challenger Job-Cut Report at 7:30 a.m.
- International Trade at 8:30 a.m.
- Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m.
- Gallup U.S. Payroll to Population at 8:30 a.m.
- PMI Services Index at 9:45 a.m.
- Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index at 9:45 a.m.
- ISM Non-Manufacturing Index at 10 a.m.
- EIA Natural Gas Report at 10:30 a.m.
- 3-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- 6-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- 3-Year Note Announcement at 11 a.m.
- 10-Year Note Announcement at 11 a.m.
- 30-Year Bond Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Fed Balance Sheet at 4:30 p.m.
- Money Supply at 4:30 p.m.
- Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank President Narayana Kocherlakota speaks at 9 p.m.
What Investors Must Know This Week
- Is This a Bear Market? This Indicator Says Yes
- U.S. Dollar Drops as Global Stock Markets Decline
- Oil Price Forecast Shows Oil Headed for a Rebound
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