Friday Morning Reads
- Most sports leagues pause for a second day. NBA aims to resume either Friday or Saturday (DKNG, VIAC, PENN, DIS). Washington Post
- NYC extends caps on fees for Uber Eats (UBER) and Grubhub (GRUB). NY Post
- Bayer (BAYRY) settlement discussions hit a roadblock. WSJ
- Hertz (HTZ) wants $1.5 bln in bankruptcy financing. WSJ
- BP (BP) aiming to restore Gulf operations. Reuters
- Boeing (BA) discovers two "distinct manufacturing issues" in Dreamliner jets. Bloomberg
- Amazon (AMZN) to purchase 1,800 electric delivery vans from Mercedes-Benz (DDAIF). Bloomberg
- Capital One (COF) lowers borrowing limits on credit cards. Bloomberg
- Facebook (FB) says Apple (AAPL) rejected attempt to tell users about AppStore fees. Reuters
A surprising party has joined the race for TikTok, as Walmart (NYSE:WMT) joined forces with Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) to buy the U.S. assets of the popular short video app. The bid could total $30B or even more, and as odd as that coupling seems, CNBC reports that Walmart originally sought majority ownership of TikTok in a consortium with Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) and SoftBank (OTCPK:SFTBY). "We believe a potential relationship could provide Walmart with an important way for us to reach and serve omnichannel customers as well as grow our third-party marketplace and advertising businesses," the company said in a statement. Oracle (NYSE:ORCL) is another U.S. company vying to acquire the assets of TikTok, and parent ByteDance (BDNCE) is expected to pick a bidder to enter into exclusive talks as early as today.
Hurricane Laura appears to have narrowly missed the heart of the U.S. fuel-making and chemicals infrastructure along the Gulf Coast, and caused less mayhem than forecasts predicted. Officials still had to cope with a chlorine leak and fire at BioLab, a chemical manufacturing facility the Lake Charles, La., area, and Motiva Enterprises reported a leak at its Port Arthur, Tex., refinery, but said it occurred during the shutdown of the refinery before the hurricane had arrived. While Laura has been downgraded to a tropical depression, almost 800K homes and businesses across Louisiana, Texas and Arkansas are still without power.
The fun in Jackson Hole wraps up today as the two-day virtual symposium concludes with the last livestreams from central bankers and other influential officials. Nothing is likely to compare to yesterday's speech from Fed Chair Jerome Powell, which will have a transformative effect on U.S. monetary policy for the foreseeable future. The central bank said it will keep interest rates low to help prop up the pandemic ravaged economy even if inflation rises above its target level of 2% for periods of time. Prices of stocks, bonds and gold all made several U-turns on the news, while equities attempted another green session overnight. Dow and S&P 500 futures are up 0.5% and 0.4%, respectively, while Nasdaq futures are hugging the flatline.
The resignation of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe due to health reasons saw the Nikkei fall 1.4% overnight, while the safe haven yen strengthened 0.5% against the dollar as the political uncertainty might prompt money to come back home. "Monetary and fiscal policies will remain intact for now, but the mood will sour like it did last time," said Tsutomu Soma, a bond trader at Monex in Tokyo. "It is going to take a long time for Japan to see a long-standing administration again." Abe, who has battled the chronic disease ulcerative colitis for years, returned as prime minister for a rare second term in December 2012, pledging to revive growth with his "Abenomics" mix of hyper-easy monetary policy, fiscal spending and reforms.
In a move that would substantially expand the nation's capacity for rapid testing, the Trump administration has unveiled a $750M deal to buy 150M rapid COVID-19 tests from Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT). "This is a major development that will help our country to remain open, get Americans back to work and kids back to school," White House senior adviser Alyssa Farah declared. Abbott said the new antigen test (about the size of a credit card) has demonstrated sensitivity of about 97% and could returns results in 15 minutes.
After sitting out two days of playoff games in protest, NBA players will reportedly take to the court again on Saturday and Sunday. The Milwaukee Bucks refused to play their playoff game against Orlando on Wednesday as a response to the shooting of Jacob Blake, a Black man shot seven times in the back by police in Kenosha, Wis. Hours later, players from 13 teams, coaches and league officials held a late-night meeting that reportedly ran off the rails. Related names ESPN (NYSE:DIS), TNT (NYSE:T), Nike (NYSE:NKE), DraftKings (NASDAQ:DKNG).
Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) has introduced a wristband for health and fitness tracking called Halo, priced at $64.99, alongside a subscription service and smartphone app. It brings some new offerings, including technology to track people's body fat percentages, sleep temperature and their emotional state, as well as two microphones and an LED indicator light, but notably lacks a screen. It's Amazon’s first significant move into wearables, which Gartner estimates will be a $52B market in 2020.
Boeing's (NYSE:BA) grounded 737 MAX is taking a major step toward returning to the skies after the European Union Aviation Safety Agency said it would send pilots to Canada to conduct test flights, bypassing coronavirus-related travel curbs. EASA will carry out the validation flights from Vancouver during the week of Sept. 7, two months after the FAA and Boeing completed certification test flights in the U.S., followed by Canada this week. Boeing recently reeled in its first 737 MAX order this year, as Poland's Enter Air placed an order for two jets with options to buy two more. BA +1% premarket.
What else is happening...
Overlooked bond market stars may be winners in new Fed policy.
Israel lists first commercial passenger flight to UAE.
Thursday's Key Earnings
Dell Technologies (NYSE:DELL) +1.7% AH on consumer, infrastructure strength.
Dollar General (NYSE:DG) -1.4% holding off on guidance for 2020.
Dollar Tree (NASDAQ:DLTR) -7.2% AH also not providing an outlook.
Gap (NYSE:GPS) +6.5% AH following an online sales rush.
HP Inc. (NYSE:HPQ) +3.3% AH guiding above full-year consensus.
Marvell Technology (NASDAQ:MRVL) -0.9% AH giving back gains after Q2 beat.
TD Bank (NYSE:TD) +0.2% helped by wealth, wholesale revenue.
VMware (NYSE:VMW) -0.6% AH despite rising subscription revenue.
Workday (NASDAQ:WDAY) +11.8% AH unveiling a dual CEO structure.
In Asia, Japan -1.4%. Hong Kong +0.6%. China +1.6%. India +0.9%.
In Europe, at midday, London -0.2%. Paris -0.4%. Frankfurt -0.7%.
Futures at 6:20, Dow +0.5%. S&P +0.4%. Nasdaq flat. Crude -0.2% to $42.94. Gold +1.3% to $1957.40. Bitcoin +0.4% to $11460.
Ten-year Treasury Yield flat at 0.74%
8:30 International Trade in Goods (Advance)
8:30 Retail Inventories (Advance)
8:30 Wholesale Inventories (Advance)
8:30 Personal Income and Outlays
9:45 Chicago PMI
10:00 Consumer Sentiment
1:00 PM Baker-Hughes Rig Count
3:00 PM Farm Prices