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The stock market today was back in record territory Friday thanks to increased optimism over President Trump's economic policies and a multiday rally in the price of crude oil.
Markets were also aided by an uptick in the Japanese and Chinese markets. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected to introduce a new plan to bolster job creation and increase stimulus in order to support its economy. Meanwhile, stronger Chinese trade data indicated that the world's second-largest economy is resilient against growing concerns about President Trump's proposed trade policies.
On Thursday, the Dow Jones added another 117 points after President Trump promised to make an announcement on tax reform and investors pushed stocks to record highs.
Let's look at the numbers from Thursday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
Dow Jones: 20,172.33; +117.99; +0.59%
S&P 500: 2,307.87; +13.20; +0.58%
Nasdaq: 5,715.18; +32.73; +0.58%
Here's a look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus a look at Friday's economic calendar.
What's Ahead for the Stock Market Today
The Dow Jones Industrial Average projected a 34-point gain thanks to increased optimism over Trump's proposed tax policies. The markets are on pace for another record day as banking and energy stocks climb.
Despite the sharp rise in U.S. stocks, markets are keeping a close eye on the European financial sector as concerns about Greece are starting to rise again. This morning, the International Monetary Fund and European leaders announced that they had reached an agreement to provide a "common stance" on Greece's required reforms to maintain fiscal solvency in the future. Greek bonds slid on the news.
Crude oil prices were pushing higher again thanks to improving signs that OPEC members are on pace to comply with its deal to cap excessive production. According to Reuters, 11 OPEC countries have proven capable of showing a 92% compliance rate with its targeted production cuts. The International Energy Agency indicated that Saudi Arabia, the cartel's largest producer, slashed its production levels by more than the deal required.
The rally could be a short one as Baker Hughes Inc. (NYSE: BHI) prepares to report its weekly production rig count later today. The number of energy platforms has increased in five of the last six reports, a sign that U.S. shale producers are pouring back into the market with crude prices above $50 per barrel. On Wednesday, the Energy Information Administration reported a sharp rise in domestic inventory levels.
But the big story is President Donald Trump…
During a meeting with airline executives, Trump promised he would soon make a "big league" announcement about U.S. taxes within the next few weeks.
"Lowering the overall tax burden on American business is big league. We're way ahead of schedule, I believe," Trump said. "And we're going to announce something, I would say over the next two or three weeks, that will be phenomenal in terms of tax."
While speculation will continue to swirl around Trump's tax plans, there is another major financial story surrounding the administration. A federal judge has just blocked Trump's plans to halt a major Obama-era rule designed to ensure that financial brokers place their clients' interests ahead of their own. It's known as the "fiduciary rule," and it could have a big impact on your financial future.
Money Morning Capital Wave Strategist Shah Gilani explains that the new "fiduciary" rules that govern retirement accounts are well-intentioned regulations that will require some reform.
Stocks to Watch Today, Feb. 10, 2017
- Shares of Activision Blizzard Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI) surged more than 8% after the gaming software provider announced a $1 billion stock buyback program after the firm easily topped Wall Street earnings expectations.
- In deal news, Reckitt Benckiser Group Plc. (LON: RB) announced it has completed its $16.6 billion deal to purchase infant formula manufacturer Mead Johnson Nutrition Co. (NYSE: MJN). Shares of MJN stock added more than 5% on the news. The total value of the deal, including debt, is roughly $17.9 billion.
- In earnings news, shares of News Corp. (Nasdaq: NWSA) added nearly 1.9% after the media giant reported earnings per share (EPS) of $0.19. That figure topped Wall Street profit expectations by $0.01. The company's quarterly revenue fell in line with expectations. The firm said that its ad revenue struggled for the quarter.
- Meanwhile, shares of Interpublic Group of Companies Inc. (NYSE: IPG) added more than 3% in pre-market hours after the advertising and marketing giant easily beat Wall Street earnings forecasts. The company boosted its revenue figures thanks to stronger than expected advertising sales.
- Keep an eye out for additional earnings reports from Buckeye Partners LP (NYSE: BPL), Aon Plc. (NYSE: AON), American Axle & Manufacturing Holdings Inc. (NYSE: AXL), Genpact Ltd. (NYSE: G), Calpine Corp. (NYSE: CPN), Knoll Inc. (NYSE: KNL), CB Richard Ellis Group Inc. (NYSE: CBG), Sensient Technologies Corp. (NYSE: SXT), and Essent Group Ltd. (Nasdaq: ESNT).
Today's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EST)
- Import and Export Prices at 8:30 a.m.
- Consumer Sentiment at 10 a.m.
- Baker Hughes Rig Count at 1 p.m.
- Treasury Budget at 2 p.m.
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