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For Feb. 5, 2016, here's the top stock market news and stocks to watch…
Stock Futures Today
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average today (Friday) fell four points after a weak jobs report. The unemployment rate may have fallen to 4.9% last month, but the country only created 151,000 jobs. Economists expected 190,000 new jobs in January. Investors will want to dig deeper into the data, but this likely ends chatter of a possible rate hike in March. Payroll growth north of 200,000 and stronger hourly earnings would have boosted the case for the Fed to hike interest rates in March.
Yesterday, the Dow Jones gained 79 points ahead of tomorrow's critical January jobs report. Markets received a strong boost from materials stocks, which jumped 3.8% thanks to rising gold and silver prices and ChemChina's $43 billion deal to purchase Syngenta AG (NYSE ADR: SYT).
Top News in the Stock Market Today
- The Stock Market Today: The U.S. Labor Department will issue the January unemployment report. With U.S. layoffs hitting a six-month high and concerns about the Fed's December rate decision, tomorrow's jobs report will have a big role in the Dow's daily performance. In addition, keep an eye out for the weekly oil rig count from Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI).
- Obama Budget: The White House yesterday proposed a $10 per barrel fee on oil as part of President Obama's new budget. The tax will be used to pay for investments in clean transportation, including mass transit, high-speed rail, and self-driving cars. The plan is likely to face significant opposition from the Republican-controlled Congress.
- Oil Watch: Crude oil prices recovered slightly this morning although concerns about a global supply glut and weakening demand in China still weigh on trader sentiment. WTI crude oil dipped 1.0% to hit $32.03 per barrel. Meanwhile, Brent crude added 0.2% to hit $34.74 per barrel. The bears might be dominating the discussion now, but here's a breakdown on why prices will move higher in 2016.
Earnings Outlook: TSN, CME, EL, MCO, AME, USG, AON
- Earnings Report No. 1, TSN: Shares of Tyson Foods Inc. (NYSE: TSN) are up 5.5% this morning after the meat producer reported fiscal first-quarter earnings. Its earnings per share (EPS) of $1.15 easily beat Wall Street expectations of $0.89, while it also topped $10.1 billion in revenue expectations. The firm also boosted its buyback program by 50 million shares and hiked its 2016 outlook.
- Earnings Report No. 2, CME: Shares of CME Group Inc. (Nasdaq: CME) are down marginally as the company prepares to report fiscal fourth-quarter earnings. Wall Street expected that the trading exchange operator would report an EPS of $0.90 on top of $807.4 million in revenue.
- Additional companies reporting quarterly earnings include Estee Lauder Co. Inc. (NYSE: EL), Moody's Corp. (NYSE: MCO), AMETEK Inc. (NYSE: AME), USG Corp. (NYSE: USG), and Aon Plc. (NYSE: AON).
Stocks to Watch: LNKD, SYMC, TM, HMC
- Stocks to Watch No. 1, LNKD: Shares of LinkedIn Corp. (NYSE: LNKD) cratered more than 30% after the company badly missed Wall Street forecast estimates.
- Stocks to Watch No. 2, SYMC: Private equity giant Silver Lake Partners has invested $500 million in antivirus software manufacturer Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC). News of the deal sent SYMC stock up more than 8%. The deal comes not long after the company reported that its profits fell by 25% in the third quarter and slashed its regular dividend by 50%.
- Stocks to Watch No. 3, TM: Shares of Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE ADR: TM) were up marginally this morning after the Japanese auto giant boosted its 2016 profit outlook. The company cited stronger growth in the China and North America markets. Meanwhile, its rival Honda Motor Co. Ltd. (NYSE ADR: HMC) fell to a six-and-a-half-year low this morning after the firm expanded a vehicle recall affecting its Accord models over an airbag issue.
Today's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EST)
- Employment Situation at 8:30 a.m.
- International Trade at 8:30 a.m.
- Baker-Hughes Rig Count at 1 p.m.
- Consumer Credit at 3 p.m.
- Treasury STRIPS at 3 p.m.
What Investors Must Know This Week
- Where We'll Find Our Biggest Profits This Year
- What a Chinese Stock Market Crash Means for Investors
- Your "Buy List" to Profit from Volatility in 2016