What the Bank of England's Rate Hike Means for the Dow Jones Today

The Dow Jones today is flat in pre-market hours after the Bank of England raised interest rates for the first time in a decade...

Dow Jones futures are up 15 points this morning ahead of the latest earnings reports from Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (NYSE: BABA). With stocks soaring to record highs as this eight-year bull market rages on, some investors are sitting on the sidelines out of fear a correction is coming. Here's our case for stocks, even at the top...

Here are the numbers from Wednesday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:

Index Previous Close Point Change Percentage Change
Dow Jones 23,435.01 57.77 0.25%
S&P 500 2,579.36 4.10 0.16%
Nasdaq 6,716.53 -11.14 -0.17%

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

  • dow jones todayMarkets are reacting this morning to a report from The Wall Street Journal that U.S. President Donald Trump has nominated Federal Reserve Gov. Jerome Powell as the next chair of the U.S. central bank. Powell, who joined the Fed's board under the Obama administration in 2012, would replace Janet Yellen. Powell was a managing director at Carlyle Group and Under Secretary of the Treasury before joining the central bank. Many believe that the Republican would allow the central bank to maintain its anticipated pace of interest rate hikes while emphasizing further deregulation.

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  • Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) will lead another busy day of earnings reports. Wall Street anticipates that the firm will report earnings per share (EPS) of $1.87 on top of $51.171 billion in revenue. The stock hit a record high of $169.94 earlier this week. Despite the news, many investors appear to be focused more on the iPhone X, which goes on sale Friday. Pre-orders for the phone began last week, and already online shoppers have faced waiting times of several weeks.
  • Tesla Inc. (Nasdaq: TSLA) stock is going to generate a lot of headlines today. The company will face new questions about its future after shares slumped another 5% after the bell Wednesday. The firm reported a bigger loss than Wall Street analysts had anticipated. Shares slumped after the firm announced that its planned production of 5,000 Model X vehicles per week will not be reached this year. The company said it will now plan to reach that level of production in early 2018.

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  • Crude oil prices were flat on Thursday morning as markets digest the latest round of inventory figures from the Energy Information Administration. Despite rising U.S. production over the last week, the EIA reported that domestic stocks fell by 2.4 million barrels last week. Production in the United States increased by 46,000 barrels per day last week. The WTI crude oil price today was flat, while Brent crude gained 0.1%.

Three Stocks to Watch Today: FB, BABA, AAPL

  • Shares of Facebook Inc. (Nasdaq: FB) fell nearly 2% after the company shattered Wall Street earnings expectations after the bell on Wednesday. The company warned that its incredible profit growth is expected to slow in the future. The firm reported its best quarterly earnings ever and said it plans to hire 10,000 new employees to focus on Internet and platform security.
  • Shares of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (NYSE: BABA) gained more than 3% after the firm reported earnings before the bell. The Chinese e-commerce giant was expected to report EPS of $1.04 on top of $7.78 billion in revenue. Instead, the firm shattered Wall Street expectations by reporting $1.29 on top of $8.28 billion in revenue.
  • Shares of Papa John's International Inc. (Nasdaq: PZZA) are trying to recover after a dismal earnings report Wednesday. The company's fell well short of Wall Street expectations and cut its forward guidance. During the firm's conference call, CEO John Schnatter blamed the NFL for its soft sales. The CEO cited the NFL's inability to resolve the ongoing national anthem protests and plans to end the company's relationship with the NFL.
  • Look for additional earnings reports from Starbucks Corp. (Nasdaq: SBUX), Activation Blizzard Inc. (Nasdaq: ATVI), Pandora Media Inc. (NYSE: P), Yum! Brands Inc. (NYSE: YUM), Tableau Software Inc. (Nasdaq: DATA), Arista Networks Inc. (Nasdaq: ANET), Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE: HLF), Polo Ralph Lauren Corp. (NYSE: RL), and Hyatt Hotels Corp. (NYSE: H).

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.
  • Productivity and Costs at 8:30 a.m.
  • Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index at 9:45 a.m.
  • EIA Natural Gas Report at 10:30 a.m.
  • Three-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
  • Six-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
  • 52-Week Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
  • New York Federal Reserve Bank President William Dudley Speaks at 12:20 p.m.
  • Fed Balance Sheet at 4:30 p.m.
  • Money Supply at 4:30 p.m.
  • Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank President Raphael Bostic Speaks at 6:15 p.m.

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About the Author

Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, consultant, and political risk analyst with decades of trading experience and degrees in economics, cybersecurity, and business from Johns Hopkins, Purdue, Indiana University, and Northwestern.

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