The Dow Jones news today is highlighted by stocks dropping in pre-market hours after a round of international news yesterday. Dow futures are down 31 points as markets digest OPEC's production cut extension and President Trump's chilly reception in Europe. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq and S&P 500 are peeling back from record highs.
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.
The Five Top Stock Market Stories for Friday
- It's another important day for economists with a revision to first-quarter GDP. Economists expect the second reading of Q1 growth to increase from 0.7% to 0.9%. In addition, look for a monthly update from the U.S. Commerce Department on the April production of durable goods and University of Michigan's monthly Consumer Sentiment Index.
- With the S&P 500 sitting near a key technical level of 2,400, more money could pile into the markets in the coming days. For this reason, readers should pay attention to the insight of Money Morning Technical Trading Specialist D.R. Barton. He has discovered a little-known pattern that allowed his readers to capture triple-digit gains in just a matter of days. Here's how he did it.
- Crude oil prices are falling again a day after OPEC officials announced intentions to extend a deal to cap excessive production by another nine months. Yesterday, crude oil fell more than 5% after OPEC members announced it would extend its cuts through March 2018. The markets responded with a big sell-off as many traders remain concerned about the long-term outlook for crude, particularly at a time that U.S. shale production is rising and costs of production are falling. The WTI crude oil price today fell 0.7%. Brent crude dipped 0.7%.
- Renewable energy will be the fastest-growing source of electricity in the United States over the next five years, according to this year's Energy Information Administration (EIA) "Energy Outlook." And that has smart investors looking for the best clean energy stocks in 2017. We offer a list of those stocks, right here.
- Finally, markets are keeping a close eye on political uncertainty in the United Kingdom. New polling data suggests that incumbent Prime Minister Theresa May is losing her edge ahead of the upcoming national election. In a recent poll since the Manchester terrorism attack, YouGov shows that her party's lead has slipped to within five points. The upcoming election could affect the nation's plans to depart the European Union and its economic policies.
Four Stocks to Watch Today: BIG, COST, GM, WWD
- In earnings news, shares of Big Lots Inc. (NYSE: BIG) added more than 7.8% after reporting quarterly results this morning. The discount retailer reported earnings per share (EPS) of $1.15, a figure that topped consensus expectations of $0.99. However, the discount retailer fell slightly short of revenue expectations and reported a decline in same-store sales. The stock pushed higher thanks to an upbeat second-quarter outlook and news that the firm hiked its 2017 outlook.
- Meanwhile, shares of Costco Wholesale Corp. (Nasdaq: COST) gained more than 1.8% after the firm topped earnings and revenue expectations. The company reported a strong uptick in sales and a big gain in membership revenue. The retail giant has been able to largely avoid the impact of Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) on its business and said that same-store sales rose during the quarter by more than 5%.
Why We Love Ford Stock
- It seems that no auto company is immune from the ongoing investigations into emissions test cheating. Shares of General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) fell another 0.6% in pre-market hours after a lawsuit alleged that the company rigged its emissions tests for its Silverado vehicles. The news comes a day after a lawsuit by the U.S. Justice Department alleged that Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (NYSE: FCAU) also engaged in illegal activities to cheat emissions tests in its diesel vehicles. FCAU stock is off 0.2%.
- Woodward Inc. (Nasdaq: WWD) is our best alternative energy stock to buy in 2017. Our Global Energy Strategist Dr. Kent Moors first recommended investors purchase Woodward in July 2015. It has risen 44% in the 22 months since. But we think it's about to head a lot higher now that the costs of wind and solar energy have dropped. Today, we discuss Woodward and the best clean energy stocks in 2017. Read our insight, right here.
Friday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)
- Durable Goods Orders at 8:30 a.m.
- GDP at 8:30 a.m.
- Corporate Profits at 8:30 a.m.
- Consumer Sentiment at 10 a.m.
- Baker Hughes Rig Count at 1 p.m.
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