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Dow Futures Up 104 Pts; Earnings Deluge in Focus

Stock MarketsOct 27, 2020 07:58AM ET
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By Peter Nurse - U.S. stocks are seen opening higher Tuesday, bouncing to a degree after Monday’s sharp losses, as investors digest a slew of key earnings amid concern over the rising number of coronavirus cases.

At 7 AM ET (1200 GMT), S&P 500 Futures traded 16 points, or 0.5%, higher, the Dow Futures contract rose 104 points, or 0.4%, while Nasdaq 100 Futures climbed 65 points, or 0.6%. 

Investors will likely focus Tuesday on the release of a raft of key earnings. Eli Lilly  (NYSE:LLY) stock fell 4.6% in premarket trading after reporting a 4% drop in profit, only a day after acknowledging its experimental antibody treatment for Covid-19 had failed to produce the desired results. Rival drug producer Merck (NYSE:MRK) rose 1.3% after handily beating expectations for earnings, while Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) stock slipped after the company said it wasn't yet ready to release preliminary data from late-stage trials of its Covid-19 drug.  

Also in the spotlight are numbers from Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT), where profit fell 54%, slightly less than expected, and 3M Company (NYSE:MMM). Software giant Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) starts a big week for the tech giants, even as they face increasing antitrust scrutiny.

Looking at economic data, updates are due for durable goods orders for September, house price data and the Richmond Fed’s regional business survey; But the Conference Board’s consumer sentiment index for October is likely to be the main release, as a sign that there is support for spending, which drives two-thirds of U.S. economic output. 

Wall Street closed substantially lower on Monday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average falling 2.3%, its worst day since early September, the S&P 500 losing 1.9%, while the Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.6%. 

Driving the recent weakness has been concerns over the resurgence of Covid-19 cases in the northern hemisphere as the winter draws nearer. Europe has been hard hit, with a number of countries resorting to new containment procedures, but the U.S. has also reported records for new daily cases. 

In just one week, the United States has seen an increase of nearly half a million cases, leading some local and state officials to rein in their reopening plans, as hospital capacity constraints start to loom.

Meanwhile the chances of a new coronavirus relief deal seems very unlikely with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell adjourning the Senate until November 9.

Oil prices edged higher Tuesday, rebounding after Monday’s hefty losses, but the surge in coronavirus cases in the U.S. and Europe means sentiment remains gloomy.

Hurricane Zeta is due to make U.S. landfall on Wednesday, with rigs and refineries shutting down in preparation for its arrival, while traders also await crude oil supply data from the American Petroleum Institute, due later in the session.

U.S. crude futures traded 0.8% higher at $38.88 a barrel, while the international benchmark Brent contract rose 0.8% to $41.12. Both contracts fell more than 3% on Monday.

Elsewhere, gold futures fell 0.1% to $1,905.05/oz, while EUR/USD traded 0.2% higher at 1.1828.


Dow Futures Up 104 Pts; Earnings Deluge in Focus

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