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The Dow Jones today looks prime to rise despite last-minute changes from Republican senators on the tax reform bill.
Dow futures are up 79 points this morning despite news that the Republican tax reform bill could be in jeopardy. But if you're looking for where the real money is, forget about "trickle-down" tax cuts and read this…
Here are the numbers from Thursday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
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Now here's a closer look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus Friday's economic calendar.
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The Top Stock Market Stories for Friday
- According to reports from Washington, U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) is opposed to the current version of the tax bill on grounds that it doesn't provide a large enough expansion to the child tax credit. The credit is currently set at $2,000 per child; however, that figure is only refundable up to $1,100. Republican Sen. Mike Lee of Utah has also expressed a similar sentiment, while Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee outright opposes the bill over deficit concerns.
- The U.S. Federal Communications Commission repealed net neutrality rules on Thursday. The rules were designed in 2015 to establish a "free and open Internet." However, critics of net neutrality argue that Internet regulation does not fall under the FCC's jurisdiction. Supporters claim that the lack of regulatory oversight will allow Internet providers to engage in price discrimination and choose what content can be viewed by customers.
- Markets will digest the news that The Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) just got a lot bigger. The iconic entertainment giant has purchased film, television, and international business assets from rival 21st Century Fox Inc. (Nasdaq: FOXA) for $52.4 billion. The deal is viewed by many analysts as a big bet by Disney on both streaming properties and live sports. The firm's ESPN franchise has been bleeding customers over the last few years. Buying Fox's 22 regional sports networks will likely shore up advertising revenue and help it address its financial problems.
- Gold prices started to climb again this morning thanks to fresh concerns about the Republican tax deal. Gold prices are hovering near multi-month lows thanks to Wednesday's interest rate hike and stronger dollar. However, the recent lows are presenting a solid opportunity for investors looking to capitalize from the rising geopolitical challenges emerging around the globe. Gold was up 0.1% in pre-market hours and traded around $1,257 per ounce. And here's our top gold stock pick for 2018.
- Crude oil prices rose slightly Friday morning thanks to improving balance between global supply and demand metrics. Bullish traders have cheered the ongoing cooperation among OPEC members, like Saudi Arabia, and non-members, like Russia, to extend their deal to cap excessive production through December 2018. However, fresh data indicates that U.S. oil production continues to rise due to improving prices across the country. WTI crude oil price today added 0.2%, while Brent crude added 0.2%.
Stocks to Watch Today: ORCL, ADBE, COST, JPM
- Shares of Oracle Corp. (NYSE: ORCL) plunged 6.5% in pre-market hours after the cloud computing giant released a weaker-than-expected outlook for the future. Prices fell below its September lows after the firm reported a disappointing third quarter. The sell-off suggested that analysts had grown too optimistic about the company's position in cloud computing. The firm did still top Wall Street profit and revenue expectations for the second quarter. earnings per share (EPS) came in at $0.70, beating estimates by $0.02. The $6.63 billion in revenue bested consensus expectations of $9.555 billion.
- Shares of Adobe Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: ADBE) added 1.3% after the company topped Wall Street earnings after the bell Thursday. The firm easily topped Wall Street EPS expectations by reporting $1.26. The Street expected earnings of $1.15. The firm also topped revenue expectations.
- Shares of Costco Wholesale Corp. (Nasdaq: COST) gained more than 2.3% this morning after the retail giant topped earnings expectations. Costco reported EPS of $1.45 on top of $31.8 billion in revenue. The Street projected an average forecast of $31.52 billion in revenue.
- JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) is very bullish on the stock market. On Thursday, analysts projected that the S&P 500 could test 3,000 in 2018. This is the most bullish forecast on Wall Street yet, topping Goldman Sach Group's (NYSE: GS) target of 2,850 and the 2,750 call by rival Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS). JPM cited the Trump administration's economic policies as reason for its optimism. The upside part of JPM's forecast represents a 13.1% jump from Thursday's closing level of 2,652 for the S&P 500.
- No major U.S. companies report earnings on Friday.
Friday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EST)
- Empire State Manufacturing Survey at 8:30 a.m.
- Industrial Production at 9:15 a.m.
- Atlanta Fed Business Inflation Expectations at 10 a.m.
- Baker-Hughes Rig Count at 1 p.m.
- Treasury International Capital at 4 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.