US futures fluctuated on Thursday, amid a darkening outlook which has put equities on course for their first monthly decline since March.
Goldman Sachs cut their Q4 growth forecasts for the US to 3% from 6%, citing; "further fiscal support will likely have to wait until 2021".
This development comes after Wednesday's session, where stocks ended lower after Fed officials warned that more stimulus was needed to rescue the US economy. The S&P 500 has fallen -4.78% this week.
Powell, in the second day of his testimony, said that a recovery would happen faster if support came "both from Congress and from the Fed".
Ahead, today's economic calendar includes; Weekly Jobless Claims at 8:30am EST, followed by a third day of testimony from Mr. Powell and New Homes Sales for August both at 10:00am EST.
Earnings reports are also expected today from; Rite Aid (RAD), Costco Wholesale (COST), Carnival (CCL), Accenture (ACN), Carmax (KMX), Darden Restaurants (DRI) and Jabil (JBL).
TODAY'S TOP HEADLINES
Politics: UK Announces Plan to Save Jobs From Virus. (Bloomberg)
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak set out his plan to rescue jobs and businesses from a winter crisis as the coronavirus pandemic again threatens to derail the UK economy.
Today's Economical Announcements.
08:30AM - ★★★ - Weekly Jobless Claims (Previous: 860,000)
10:00AM - ★★★ - Fed Chair Powell Testifies
10:00AM - ★★★ - New Home Sales (Aug) (Previous: 901,000)
STOCKS IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Pre-Market Movers & News Related Stocks.
Nikola (NKLA): [NEWS] Nathan Anderson, head of short-selling firm Hindenburg Research, told The Wall Street Journal that more bad news will emerge about the electric truck maker Nikola. Hindenburg recently released a report about a series of improprieties at Nikola, which has hit the stock hard even as Nikola calls the report “false and misleading.”
E.W. Scripps (SSP): [NEWS] Scripps announced a deal buy privately held TV network operator ION Media for $2.65 billion. The deal is being backed by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B), with Berkshire making a $600 million preferred equity investment in Scripps to help finance the purchase.
Jefferies Financial (JEF): [EARNINGS] Earned $1.07 per share for its third quarter, well above the consensus forecast of 34 cents a share. The investment firm also saw revenue top estimates, helped by record investment banking and asset management revenue.
CarMax (KMX): [EARNINGS] Earned $1.79 per share for its latest quarter, well above the consensus estimate of $1.08 a share. Revenue was also above analysts’ forecasts. CarMax saw vehicle sales rise by 3.9%, with comparable-store sales up 1.2%, and its financing profit increased by 29%.
BlackBerry (BB): [EARNINGS] Beat estimates by 9 cents a share, with quarterly earnings of 11 cents per share. Revenue was also above expectations, on strong demand for its security and car software.
Goldman Sachs (GS): [UPGRADE] Upgraded to “buy” from “neutral” at UBS, which said Goldman is already generating solid results in the current environment and could benefit further from election-related volatility.
FedEx (FDX): [UPGRADE] Upgraded to “buy” from “hold” at Stifel, which said FedEx is benefiting from pandemic-related changes, including much faster growth in demand levels than originally anticipated.
Accenture (ACN): [EARNINGS] Reported quarterly profit of $1.70 per share, falling 3 cents a share short of Wall Street forecasts. Revenue also came in slightly shy of estimates and the company gave a weaker-than-expected current-quarter revenue forecast, as clients spend less due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
H.B. Fuller (FUL): [EARNINGS] Reported quarterly earnings of 76 cents per share, 6 cents a share above estimates. The adhesives maker’s revenue also topped forecasts. The company said it has performed well during the pandemic, although it does expect current-quarter revenue to be flat to lower compared to a year ago.
Darden Restaurants (DRI): [EARNINGS] Earned 28 cents per share for its latest quarter, beating the consensus estimate of 5 cents a share. Revenue was very slightly below Street forecasts with sales during the quarter at about 82% of prior-year levels. The company also reinstated its dividend.
FactSet (FDS): [EARNINGS] Earned $2.88 per share for its latest quarter, 34 cents a share above estimates. Revenue came in above forecasts as well. FactSet said it expected fiscal 2021 adjusted earnings of $10.75 to $11.15 per share, compared to a consensus estimate of $10.84 a share.
Rite Aid (RAD): [EARNINGS] Reported a quarterly profit of 25 cents per share, compared to analysts’ expectations of a 1 cent per share loss. Revenue was also above estimates, with strength in both the retail pharmacy and pharmacy services segments.
UnitedHealth (UNH): [NEWS] Is in advanced talks to buy online pharmacy startup DivvyDose, according to a Bloomberg report. The proposed deal is said to be worth about $300 million, according to people familiar with the matter, although nothing has been finalized.
Dollar Tree (DLTR): [NEWS] Is resuming its stock buyback program, after suspending it in March due to the pandemic. The discount retailer has roughly $800 million in buyback authorization remaining under that program.
DECLINERS: NKLA, ALB, GRPN, TSLA, CFG
FG New America Acquisition (FGNA.U) (Price: 10) (Est. Vol: $225.0M)
Peridot Acquisition (PDAC.U) (Price: 10) (Est. Vol: $300.0M)
Taysha Gene (TSHA) (Low: 18, High: 20) (Est. Vol: $125.4M)
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