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The Dow Jones Industrial Average will try to hold above the 25,000 level after a 434-point surge Wednesday.
This morning, Dow Futures projected a small decline as investors weighed earnings reports and a breaking development that U.S. and Chinese officials are negotiating a meeting for later this month between U.S. President Donald Trump and Xi Jinping.
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...
The Top Stories Moving the Dow Jones Industrial Average Today
- Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) leads a busy day of earnings reports on Thursday. As stocks continue to rally, there are reasons to have some concerns about the e-commerce giant's report after the bell today. Although half of American households are Prime members and its core businesses are growing, the firm has a history of falling short of Wall Street earnings expectations during the holiday quarter. Today, analysts expect the firm will report earnings per share of $5.65, up from $2.16 during the same period last year. Revenue is pegged at $71.88 million, up from $60.45 billion last year.
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- On Wednesday, U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell announced plans to keep interest rates unchanged. Powell appeared to reverse his sentiment on the central bank's plans on monetary policy moving forward, and said it will be "patient" with rate hikes moving forward. The decision to hold pat on rates came while U.S. pending home sales plunged by 9.8% year over year. Higher interest rates and rising housing costs are pushing the "dream" of a new home out of more Americans' reach.
- The record cold temperatures across the Midwest have paralyzed power companies and halted manufacturing at some of America's largest plants. In Michigan, General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (NYSE: FCAU) announced it was halting auto production in 15 facilities due to a lack of natural gas across the state. The thermometer plunged as low as -75 degrees Fahrenheit in some areas on Wednesday, and subzero temperatures are expected to last at least through Thursday.
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Stocks to Watch Today: GE, FB, TSLA
- Shares of General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) popped 7% in pre-market hours after the company reported stronger-than-expected revenue before the bell. The firm's profit estimates, however, fell $0.05 short of consensus expectations at $0.17 per share. CEO Larry Culp will still need to address three issues that are keeping many potential investors on edge: GE Capital still faces financial challenges, the SEC and Justice Department are still investigating the firm, and its power division has been burning cash at an incredible rate.
- Shares of Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) popped more than 11% in pre-market hours after the company crushed earnings after the bell Wednesday. The social media giant reported gains in daily active users in every geographic market on the planet. The firm also reported earnings per share of $2.38, topping expectations by $0.19. Its $16.91 billion in quarterly revenue also bested consensus expectations of $16.39 billion. The firm matched daily and monthly active user estimates. In addition, investors largely ignored the latest date scandal rattling sentiment.
- Shares of Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA) slumped 4.5% before the bell Thursday. During the company's quarterly conference call, CEO Elon Musk announced that CFO Deepak Ahuja will be retiring. This is the second time that Ahuja has departed the company after returning just two years ago. Despite the departure, the firm's quarterly earnings report was mixed overall. Adjusted earnings per share came in at $1.93, well below the $2.20 expected by analysts. Revenue, however, beat estimates, and Musk said he expects that his company will be profitable moving forward.
- Look for other earnings reports from Mastercard Inc. (NYSE: MA), Celegene Corp. (NASDAQ: CELG), Altria Group Inc. (NYSE: MO), United Parcel Service Inc. (NYSE: UPS), Charter Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: CHTR), ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP), Deckers Outdoor Corp. (NASDAQ: DECK), and Valero Energy Corp. (NYSE: VLO).
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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.