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The Dow Jones now wrestles between rising coronavirus cases in certain areas and a dovish Fed policy. The index has gained a few new members, and lost some. See what they are below.
The S&P 500, meanwhile, pressed back above 3,500 on Friday for the first time. Continue reading for more of what's moving the Dow today...
We'll start with the numbers from Friday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
|Index||Previous Close||Point Change||Percentage Change|
Now here are what I think will be the most important market events and stocks on Monday morning.
The Top Stock Market Stories for Monday
- This morning, states across the country are reporting an uptick in COVID-19 cases. A number of midwestern states including Indiana, Iowa, and Michigan have seen their cases increase week over week by 5% or more. According to reports, there were 41,638 new cases over the last week. However, Sun Belt states like Texas, Florida, California, and Arizona have all dropped in cases totals by more than 15% over the last week.
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- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration will permit greater use of Gilead Sciences Inc.'s (NASDAQ: GILD) antiviral drug, remdesivir, for use in treating hospitalized patients with COVID-19. The FDA had previously only allowed the treatment to be used for patients suffering from the worst symptoms of COVID-19. This morning, Johns Hopkins University announced the total number of domestic cases is about to hit 6 million. At least 183,000 Americans have now died due to the pandemic.
- Finally, it's a big day for the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Following the split of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL), the Dow will now have three new members. The index is adding Honeywell International Inc. (NYSE: HON), Amgen Inc. (NASDAQ: AMGN) and Salesforce.com Inc. (NYSE: CRM). The Index will shed Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE), Exxon Mobil Corp. (NYSE: XOM), and Raytheon Technologies Corp. (NYSE: RTX). The news coincides with Apple stock trading on a post-split basis (4-to-1).
Stocks to Watch Today: T, BRK.A, TSLA, APO, PHG
- Shares of AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) are in focus on news that the company is exploring a deal to potentially sell its DirecTV division. Reports suggest that private equity giant Apollo Global Management Inc. (NYSE: APO) is among the bidders for the satellite television operator. AT&T is under pressure from shareholders and other active investors to pay down debt, shed non-core assets, and narrow its focus in the telecom space.
- Meanwhile, shares of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK.A) are in focus after Warren Buffett's conglomerate purchased stakes of 5% in five major Japanese trading companies. The companies - which import massive amounts of products to Japan - are Itochu Corp., Marubeni Corp., Mitsubishi Corp., Mitsui & Co., and Sumitomo Corp.
- Shares of Philips (NYSE: PHG) were off 3.5% after the company revised its forward-looking guidance. The firm announced that the U.S. government had canceled most of its order for 43,000 ventilators. The firm is also slashing its earnings expectations. The U.S. House of Representatives determined this summer that the U.S. government had overpaid for these ventilators by at least $500 million.
- Finally, pay close attention to Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA). The company will also begin trading today on a 5-for-1 stock split.
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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.