What to Watch Today: Dow Set to Rise Slightly After Strong Earnings Failed to Inspire

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U.S. stock futures rose slightly and bond yields steadied Thursday following a new Covid-era low of 268,000 initial jobless claims for last week. That's according to the government's latest data released before the bell. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq dropped Wednesday as investors considered a continuation of strong retail earnings against lingering inflation concerns. (CNBC)

However, all three stock benchmarks were hovering near their Nov. 8 record high closes, with the Dow roughly 1.4% shy and the S&P 500 and Nasdaq less than 1% away. (CNBC)

* If Biden picks Brainard over Powell for Fed chief, expect an immediate market impact (CNBC)


Macy's (M) shares surged more than 10% in premarket trading after the department store chain on Thursday blew away estimates for fiscal third-quarter earnings. Revenue also topped what analysts had forecast. Macy's raised its full-year outlook ahead of the holidays. Macy's stock has rallied more than 174% year to date to over $30 per share. However, that's nowhere near its all-time high of nearly $73 per share in July 2015. (CNBC)

Shares of Kohl's (KSS), up nearly 40% already in 2021, were indicated to add 9% before they open for trading on Wall Street. The department store chain Thursday also reported much better-than-expected fiscal third-quarter earnings. Revenue also beat estimates. Kohl's raised its full-year forecast. The stock saw a sharp decline from loftier levels in 2018 into the pandemic before recovering. (CNBC)

Shares of Nvidia soared 8% in the premarket, a gain that would move the tech giant closer to an $800 billion stock market value. After the bell on Wednesday, the company reported a 60% year-over-year increase in adjusted quarterly earnings per share and a 50% year-over-year rise in revenue. Both measures exceeded expectations. Shares of Nvidia, as of Wednesday's close, have soared 124% in 2021. (CNBC)

* Alibaba shares drop 5% as its slashes guidance and earnings plunge on China's slowdown (CNBC)

Dow stock Cisco Systems, up nearly 27% in 2021 as of Wednesday's close, fell more than 6% in the premarket, the morning after the computer networking firm missed on quarterly revenue and issued weaker-than-expected forward guidance. Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins blamed supply constraints. The company did beat estimates for earnings per share for the three months ended on Oct. 30. (CNBC)

AstraZeneca's (AZN) antibody drug has been shown to be highly effective at preventing Covid in people who may not respond well to vaccines, according to new clinical trial results. Patients given a single injection of the treatment were 83% less likely to develop symptomatic cases of the coronavirus than participants who were given a placebo. (CNBC)

* White House says about 10% of U.S. kids 5-11 already got first Covid shots (CNBC)

Deere & Co. workers approved a new contract late Wednesday, delivering 10% raises immediately and ending a monthlong strike for more than 10,000 employees. The United Auto Workers union said 61% of its members approved the latest deal with the tractor maker, even though the new offer was strikingly similar to one that a majority of workers rejected two weeks ago. (AP)

North America's leaders are reviving three-way summitry after a Trump-era break. U.S. President Joe Biden, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador are set to resume the tradition of the North America Leaders' Summit on Thursday. However, the three allies face deep differences on migration, climate and trade. (AP)

* White House offering more aid for winter heat, utility bills, funded by Covid relief (AP)

Starbucks (SBUX) is opening a pick-up cafe in midtown Manhattan with Amazon (AMZN) that uses the e-commerce giant's cashierless technology to attract busy consumers who want to buy coffee or snack quickly. The first Starbucks Pickup with Amazon Go location opens Thursday in New York City, on 59th Street, between Park and Lexington Avenues. (CNBC)

SpaceX is "hoping" to launch the first orbital flight test of its mammoth Starship rocket in January, according to Elon Musk. The timetable depends on testing and regulatory approval. Starship is the massive, next-generation rocket SpaceX is developing to launch cargo and people on missions to the moon and Mars. (CNBC)


BJ's Wholesale (BJ) beat estimates by 11 cents with adjusted quarterly earnings of 91 cents per share, while revenue and comparable-store sales also topped forecasts. BJ's also announced a new stock buyback program worth up to $500 million.

Petco (WOOF) beat estimates by 2 cents with adjusted quarterly earnings of 20 cents per share and revenue also above estimates. Comparable store sales were also better than expected, and Petco raised its full-year forecast. (JD) beat estimates on both the top and bottom lines with the China-based e-commerce company continuing to benefit from sustained and elevated demand for online shopping. Shares rose 1.4% in the premarket.

Sonos (SONO) matched estimates in reporting a quarterly loss of 7 cents per share, but the maker of wireless home audio equipment saw revenue come in slightly below analyst projections. However, Sonos also issued a better-than-expected fiscal 2022 sales forecast, even in the face of supply constraints that are impacting its production levels, and the stock added 1.9% in premarket action.

Bath & Body Works (BBWI) reported an adjusted quarterly profit of 92 cents per share, beating the 60 cents consensus estimate, while the personal care products retailer also saw revenue beat Wall Street forecasts. The quarterly report was the first for Bath & Body Works as a standalone company following the split-up of L Brands. The stock gained 5% in premarket trading.

Victoria's Secret (VSCO) surged 11.5% in premarket trading after the company beat estimates by 10 cents with adjusted quarterly earnings of 81 cents per share. This was the first quarterly report for Victoria's Secret as a standalone company, also a product of the L Brands split-up.

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