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The Dow Jones today is rising in pre-market hours after the European Central Bank extends its stimulus program, but Amazon earnings loom later today…
Dow Jones futures are up 52 points this morning, but one of the biggest companies on Wall Street will report its much-anticipated earnings after the bell today. Markets fell triple digits Wednesday after weaker-than-expected earnings reports from AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA), and several other blue-chip giants. Here's exactly what you can expect from the big tech earnings reports today…
Here are the numbers from Wednesday 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 Thursday's economic calendar.
The Five Top Stock Market Stories for Thursday
- Investors will continue to monitor Republican efforts to get tax reform passed in 2017. After the GOP's recent efforts to pass a budget, its leadership is trying to corral support for the largest tax system overhaul in three decades. But many pitfalls remain, and markets are concerned about the financial impact of the latest proposal. Current estimates would allow the U.S. federal deficit to spike by as much as $1.5 trillion over the next 10 years. Yesterday, BlackRock Inc. (NYSE: BLK) Chair and CEO Larry Fink said that the stock market hasn't even priced gains expected from tax reform.
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- Airline stocks will generate a lot of attention today thanks to a round of earnings reports for the sector. Shares of Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) and American Airlines Group Inc. (Nasdaq: AAL) will be on the move after the firms report earnings before the bell. The reports come the same day that new rules will affect all air travel into the United States. The new requirements center on efforts to avoid an all-cabin ban on laptop computers. Companies will now engage in short security interviews and other advanced screening techniques. Roughly 180 airlines from 105 nations will be affected by the new security protocols.
- The price of Bitcoin has been declining steadily after it hit a record high and surpassed the $6,000 mark last weekend. Cryptocurrency markets continue to face a wealth of question marks ahead of Bitcoin's upcoming hard fork that will introduce a new offspring to the blockchain called "Bitcoin Gold." Here's more on Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, and what's affecting cryptocurrency values around the globe.
- With the leader of the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank set to speak today, investors want to know one key thing about the central bank: Who will President Donald Trump pick to head the U.S. Federal Reserve? Trump has been seeking input in recent weeks from other top Republicans on whether he should replace Janet Yellen. The president is considering recommendations that include Stanford University economist John Taylor, Fed Gov. Jerome Powell, and, of course, granting Yellen another term. Trump is expected to make his pick before traveling to Asia next week. Here's more on Trump's short list for the next Fed chair, including a surprising Generation X candidate.
- Crude oil prices are mixed again Thursday as traders weigh another round of data. Yesterday, the Energy Information Administration announced a surprise uptick in domestic crude inventory levels. The announcement offset optimism fueled by word that Saudi Arabia is moving to help reduce global inventory levels across the globe. The WTI crude oil price today dipped 0.2%. Brent crude fell 0.3%. Oil prices really picked up steam in the third quarter, but have hovered in a tight trading range in recent weeks. Heading into 2018, we're very bullish on crude prices. Just how high do we think they will go? You can read our 2018 oil price forecast, right here.
Three Stocks to Watch Today: AMZN, F, GE
Is It Time to Jump Ship on Amazon?
- Do you trust a stranger to enter your house while you're at work? Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) announced that it will begin "in-home" deliveries for Prime members. The firm unveiled a special product called "Amazon Key" that will allow delivery personnel to unlock your home for a few minutes and leave packages inside your home. The product is designed to ensure deliveries and prevent theft of packages. The problem is that the required Wi-Fi and camera will cost users at least $250 for the cheapest models. Amazon will report earnings after the bell Thursday. Wall Street anticipates an earnings per share (EPS) loss of $0.01 on top of $41.97 billion in revenue.
- Shares of Twitter Inc. (NYSE: TWTR) rallied more than 9.8% after the company offered a surprise earnings report Wednesday that stunned many investors. The company reported a loss of $21.1 million; however, the adjusted EPS was well above expectations. The firm would have reported a gain of $0.10 if one removes certain charges and benefits. Some analysts believe that Twitter is on pace for its first profitable quarter.
- The problems for General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) continue to mount. Just days ago, the company offered a horrible earnings report and rumors emerged that it may have to slash its dividend. Now, Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) is sounding the alarm. The financial institution's Wealth Management arm has removed the conglomerate from its dividend equity portfolio over concerns about its ability to maintain its current yield. Morgan Stanley has replaced GE with Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) in the portfolio.
- Look for additional earnings reports from Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC), Gilead Sciences Inc. (Nasdaq: GILD), Alphabet Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOGL), Twitter Inc. (NYSE: TWTR), Baidu Inc. (Nasdaq: BIDU), First Solar Inc. (Nasdaq: FSLR), Celgene Corp. (Nasdaq: CELG), Western Digital Corp. (NYSE: WDC), Boston Beer Co. (NYSE: SAM), United Parcel Service Inc. (NYSE: UPS), Deckers Outdoor Corp. (Nasdaq: DECK), and Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA).
Thursday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)
- International Trade in Goods at 8:30 a.m.
- Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m.
- Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index at 9:45 a.m.
- Pending Home Sales Index at 10 a.m.
- EIA Natural Gas Report at 10:30 a.m.
- Minneapolis Fed Bank President Neel Kashkari speaks at 10:30 a.m.
- Kansas City Fed Manufacturing Index at 11 a.m.
- Three-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Six-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Seven-Year Note Auction at 1 p.m.
- Fed Balance Sheet at 4:30 p.m.
- Money Supply at 4:30 p.m.
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