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The Dow Jones Industrial Average today is trending up after closing down 12 points yesterday, but instability in Europe could threaten gains…
Dow futures are up 43 points this morning, but violence in Catalonia over its secession vote coupled with a stalemate in Brexit talks could lead to uncertainty in the markets. Fortunately, investors can still protect themselves through our profit plays in the Unstoppable Trends…
Here are the numbers from Monday 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 Tuesday's economic calendar.
The Five Top Stock Market Stories for Tuesday
- Traders are waiting to hear from the Catalan government this morning. Catalan President Carles Puigdemont is expected to formally announce the region's independence from Spain. Despite a recent low-turnout vote that overwhelmingly supported independence, the violent reaction of the Spanish government to the vote worsened the crisis. In addition, many businesses have proactively moved their addresses out of Catalonia to protect themselves from government punishment.
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- Today will feature the largest battle over a board of directors in the history of corporate America. Proctor & Gamble Co. (NYSE: PG) is the largest company to ever face a proxy fight at the board of directors level. The firm is aiming to prevent activist hedge fund manager Nelson Peltz from obtaining a board seat. According to reports, the two sides have spent more than $100 million on advertising and mailings to shareholders to attempt to secure their votes.
- Crude oil prices were pushing higher again as we see a greater rebalance of supply and demand across the globe. The WTI crude oil price today added 1.2% and pressed above $50.00. Brent crude gained 0.3%. Markets were concerned about a potential glut of oil after major refiners shuttered parts of their capacity ahead of Hurricane Nate. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia slashed its November production estimate by about 560,000 barrels per day, as the world's largest OPEC member aims to cap excessive output.
- Investors will also be looking for a report from the International Monetary Fund this morning. The international financial body is expected to report that U.S. GDP growth will come in around 2.1% for the year. The question is whether this figure will be good news for U.S. President Donald Trump, who promised 4% growth during the 2016 campaign. Trump could argue that Congress' inability to get pro-growth policies like tax reform passed is responsible for this low level of economic growth.
- Gold prices are higher and closing in on the psychologically important $1,300.00 level. Safe-haven demand and short covering are featured in gold and silver markets early this week. Investors are keeping a very close eye on the United Kingdom. British Prime Minister Theresa May said Monday that her government must be ready for any scenario in its split from the European Union. Traders are increasingly concerned that the nation could exit the world's largest economic bloc without a trade deal.
Stocks to Watch Today: NVDA, WMT, AIG
- Shares of Nvidia Corp. (Nasdaq: NVDA) jumped more than 3.5% after the firm unveiled a new supercomputer that can operate fully autonomous taxi cabs. The license-plate-sized hardware system was announced at a technology conference in Munich, Germany, and it is seen as a major upgrade for self-driving cars.
- Shares of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. (NYSE: WMT) were up 2.2% after the firm announced plans for a $20 billion buyback program. Investors were also confident after executives reiterated its 2018 earnings guidance and hiked its 2019 guidance by 3%. The company has been facing increased competitive pressure from Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) and Target Corp. (NYSE: TGT).
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- Shares of American International Group Inc. (NYSE: AIG) were off in premarket hours after the company announced initial insurance losses from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma and the earthquakes in Mexico. The firm said it will tally about $3 billion in losses due to the natural disasters.
- Tuesday will feature earnings reports from Barracuda Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: CUDA) and Healthcare Services Group Inc. (Nasdaq: HCSG).
Tuesday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)
- NFIB Small Business Optimism Index at 6 a.m.
- Redbook at 8:55 a.m.
- Minneapolis Fed Bank President Neel Kashkari speaks at 10 a.m.
- Three-Month Bill Auction at 11:30 a.m.
- Six-Month Bill Auction at 11:30 a.m.
- Four-Week Bill Auction at 1 p.m.
- 52-Week Bill Auction at 1 p.m.
- Dallas Federal Reserve Bank President Rob Kaplan speaks at 8 p.m.
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About the Author
Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, and consultant with degrees from Northwestern, Johns Hopkins, Purdue, and Indiana University. He is a seasoned financial and political risk analyst, with a focus on stocks, hedge funds, private equity, blockchain, and housing policy. He has conducted risk assessment projects for clients in 27 countries, and consulted on policy and financial operations for some of the nation's largest financial institutions, including a $1.5 trillion credit fund, a $43 billion credit and auto loan giant, as well as two of the largest Wall Street banks by assets under management.
Garrett joined Money Map Press as an economist and researcher in 2011, specializing in alternative strategies with an emphasis on fundamental and technical analysis.