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The Dow Jones Industrial Average is rising again for the fifth day in a row, but Friday's jobs report looms. Dow Jones futures are up 55 points this morning as traders eye more economic data coming this week.
The Dow's winning streak is boosting stock prices, but there are still stocks flying under the radar that could be the best opportunities on the market right now…
Here are the numbers from Wednesday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
|Index||Previous Close||Point Change||Percentage Change|
Now here's a closer look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus Thursday's economic calendar.
The Five Top Stock Market Stories for Thursday
- Markets could extend their winning streak to five sessions, as investors have largely shook off geopolitical risk concerns. North Korea, despite its recent launch test, has faded from the news, and markets are more concerned this morning about a string of economic reports regarding the health of the economy. First up this morning was news that 236,000 Americans sought jobless benefits last week. That figure is down slightly from the 238,000 expected by officials. The news comes a day after a very positive private jobs report, which has traders optimistic about tomorrow's official U.S. Department of Labor unemployment rate for August.
- Even though the Dow is climbing despite North Korea's growing belligerence, the country's nuclear program remains a threat. On Tuesday, U.S. President Donald Trump sent a cryptic tweet to his followers saying that talking to North Korea is not the answer to 25 years of extortion by the rogue government. Any military conflict would have a quick and immediate downward impact on the stock market. Fortunately, investors can protect their money from the North Korean threat. Money Morning Options Trading Specialist Tom Gentile offers you eight ways to protect yourself, right here.
- Uber Technologies Inc.'s new CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi, has been meeting with employees and addressed them for the first time yesterday. Khosrowshahi has hinted that the firm will undergo a cultural change in order to get itself back on track after a series of embarrassing public relations problems. The new CEO, who will be stepping down from Expedia Inc. (Nasdaq: EXPE), will start at the firm next week.
What You Need to Know About Uber's New CEO
- Crude oil prices were flat in premarket hours, but gasoline futures have soared to roughly $2.00. The price of gasoline is surging due to Hurricane Harvey's destruction of part of the U.S. refinery network. At least 13 U.S. refineries have been shut down or are closing in the aftermath of the storm. Others are operating at reduced capacity. All told, about 20% of the U.S. refinery capacity has been knocked out of operation. The WTI crude oil price today added 0.2%. Brent crude gained 0.1%.
- Finally, the price of Bitcoin surged to an all-time record of $4,700 in the last 24 hours. Its market capitalization jumped to a staggering $77.1 billion after it received a bullish upgrade from Moas. The analyst and founder of Standpoint Research forecasted that Bitcoin could rise as high as $20,000 over the next three years. Other cryptocurrencies like Ethereum, Ripple, and Litecoin were also rising this morning. Here's more from our daily cryptocurrency coverage, which you can access each day for free at Money Morning.
Three Stocks to Watch Today: DG, CPB, DIS
- Shares of Dollar General Corp. (NYSE: DG) were flat after the company topped Wall Street earnings expectations before the bell. The company reported earnings per share (EPS) of $1.10, beating estimates by one cent. The firm also narrowly topped Wall Street revenue estimates after reporting a quarterly figure of $5.828 billion.
- Shares of Campbell Soup Co. (NYSE: CPB) fell 4.4% after the firm fell short of earnings expectations this morning. The food manufacturer reported EPS of $0.52 on top of $1.664 billion. Both numbers came in lower than the $0.55 and $1.69 billion expected on Wall Street. The downturn in the stock was accelerated by news that the company issued a weaker-than-expected annual outlook.
- Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) announced plans yesterday to slash ABC's budget by 10%. The budget cuts are expected to start by September. Disney has been under a significant amount of pressure due to cord-cutters fleeing cable packages, which include channels like ESPN.
- Look for additional earnings reports from Lululemon Athletica Inc. (Nasdaq: LULU), Ambarella Inc. (Nasdaq: AMBA), Palo Alto Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: PANW), and Mobileye NV (Nasdaq: MBLY).
Thursday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)
- Challenger Job-Cut Report at 7:30 a.m.
- Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m.
- Personal Income and Outlays at 8:30 a.m.
- Chicago PMI at 9:45 a.m.
- Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index at 9:45 a.m.
- Pending Home Sales Index at 10 a.m.
- EIA Natural Gas Report at 10:30 a.m.
- Four-Week Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Three-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Six-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Robert Kaplan speaks at 11:30 a.m.
- Fed Balance Sheet at 4:30 p.m.
- Money Supply at 4:30 p.m.
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