Market Overview

A Peek Into The Markets: US Stock Futures Gain; AstraZeneca Halts COVID-19 Vaccine Study

A Peek Into The Markets: US Stock Futures Gain; AstraZeneca Halts COVID-19 Vaccine Study

Pre-open movers

U.S. stock futures traded higher in early pre-market trade, following a sharp drop in the previous session. AstraZeneca plc (NYSE: AZN) disclosed that it has temporarily halted the advanced trials of its COVID-19 vaccine to allow for a review of safety data by an independent committee. Investors are awaiting earnings from American Eagle Outfitters Inc (NYSE: AEO), RH (NYSE: RH), and GameStop Corp. (NYSE: GME). The Labor Department's JOLTS report for July is scheduled for release at 10:00 a.m. ET.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 177 points to 27,702 while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index futures traded rose 30.25 points to 3,365.75. Futures for the Nasdaq 100 index climbed 218.75 points to 11,279.25.

The U.S. has the highest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in the world, with total infections in the country exceeding 6,328,050 with around 189,680 deaths. India reported a total of at least 4,370,120 confirmed cases, while Brazil confirmed over 4,162,070 cases.

Oil prices traded higher as Brent crude futures rose 1% to trade at $40.17 per barrel, while US WTI crude futures rose 1.2% to trade at $37.20 a barrel. The API’s weekly report on crude oil stocks will be released later today.

A Peek Into Global Markets

European markets were higher today, with the Spanish Ibex Index rising 0.6% and STOXX Europe 600 Index climbing 0.7%. The French CAC 40 Index gained 0.7%, while German DAX 30 rose 0.9% and London’s FTSE 100 rose 1%. Investors in Europe are awaiting the ECB’s monetary policy decision tomorrow for clues regarding further stimulus.

In Asian markets, Japan’s Nikkei fell 1.04%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell 0.80% China’s Shanghai Composite Index fell 1.86% and India’s BSE Sensex fell 0.6%. Chinese industrial deflation eased last month, with the producer price index declining 2.0% year-over-year in August versus a 2.4% drop in July.

Broker Recommendation

Analysts at MKM Partners upgraded Continental Resources, Inc. (NYSE: CLR) from Neutral to Buy and lowered the price target from $21 to $20.

Continental Resources shares fell 9.8% to close at $14.13 on Tuesday.

Breaking News

  • Lululemon Athletica Inc (NASDAQ: LULU) reported better-than-expected results for its second quarter. Sales at company-owned stores declined 51% year over year to $287.2 million, while direct-to-consumer sales surged 155% to $554.3 million.
  • Vroom, Inc. (NASDAQ: VRM) raised its guidance for the third quarter. However, the company’s latest forecast was still below analysts’ expectations. Vroom also disclosed a 10.35 million share common stock offering.
  • Slack Technologies Inc (NYSE: WORK) reported upbeat earnings and sales for the second quarter. However, the company’s billing growth slowed in the quarter.
  • HD Supply Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: HDS) reported upbeat earnings for its second quarter.

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