Morning Reads

Morning reads

Todays Open Interest Change



Idalia has come and gone, with heavy rainfall, winds, flooding and local residents continuing to assess the damage. It made landfall Wednesday morning on the Gulf Coast of Florida as a Category 3, but the hurricane was downgraded to a tropical storm as it crossed Georgia and the Carolinas. The eye of the storm is now going back out to sea, but by the look of related stocks, Idalia appears to have thankfully caused much less destruction than initially feared.

On the move: Allstate (NYSE:ALL) rose 3.4% on Wednesday, along with other insurers like Progressive (NYSE:PGR), RenaissanceRe (NYSE:RNR) and Universal Insurance Holdings (NYSE:UVE), with claims not expected to be as bad as previously forecast. Meanwhile, backup generator player Generac (NYSE:GNRC) - which can see outsized trading activity from adverse weather events - fell back following a run-up over the past few sessions. Home Depot (NYSE:HD) and Lowe's (NYSE:LOW) also traded mildly higher, but no major jumps were seen as homeowners look to rebuild in the aftermath of the hurricane.

Putting things into context, AccuWeather issued a preliminary estimate of economic damages from Idalia in a range of $18B-$20B for the Southeastern U.S., compared to last year's Hurricane Ian, which caused an economic loss of $180B-$210B. "I let each governor I spoke with know if there's anything, anything the states need right now, I'm ready to mobilize that support," President Biden said in a statement.

Elsewhere: Duke Energy (NYSE:DUK) in Florida aimed to have the power of 95% of impacted customers restored by Wednesday night, and so far, 135,000 homes and businesses are back online. NextEra Energy (NYSE:NEE), which owns Florida Power & Light Company - America's largest electric utility - is also on watch. In terms of air travel, the Tampa and Tallahassee International Airports said they expected to resume full operations today, which is good news for carriers like Southwest (NYSE:LUV), Delta (NYSE:DAL) and American Airlines (NASDAQ:AAL).

No end in sight

Things are getting rocky over in Hollywood. Reports suggest that a high-profile meeting between Amazon Studios (NASDAQ:AMZN), Disney (NYSE:DIS), Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX), Universal (NASDAQ:CMCSA) and Warner Bros. Discovery (NASDAQ:WBD) will take place today amid divisions over how to proceed to end strikes by writers and actors, which are now in Day 122 and 49, respectively. Failing to resolve the issues may lead to "devastating effects if it is not settled soon," according to Barry Diller, former CEO of Paramount Pictures and founder of the Fox Broadcasting Company, and could potentially "produce an absolute collapse of an entire industry." Also see Disney ends at nine-year low, bearish bets rise

The earnings front

Shares of Salesforce (CRM) rose 5.6% AH to $215 after the cloud-computing giant reported Q2 results that topped expectations. Continued growth was seen in all of CRM's biggest segments, while guidance was raised for fiscal 2024. "I'm a growth CEO. So that's what I like to do... but I'll tell you, now I am quite addicted to the bottom line as well," CEO Marc Benioff announced on an earnings call. In terms of artificial intelligence, he said Salesforce is "looking at the evolution in a broad way, and you're really going to see it take place over four major zones." (22 comments)

Offshoring, onshoring, nearshoring

What about a different approach entirely? Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is reportedly testing 3D printers to make the steel chassis used by some of its upcoming Apple Watches. The new approach could potentially make the U.S. tech giant's supply chain more efficient, cut the time it would take to build devices and reduce its environmental impact due to using less material. The work is being done internally by Apple's manufacturing design team, and if the tests on the Apple Watch work out, the company could expand the use of 3D printing to other products in the future. (10 comments)

Today's Markets

In Asia, Japan +0.7%. Hong Kong -0.5%. China -0.6%. India -0.4%.
In Europe, at midday, London +0.1%. Paris -0.1%. Frankfurt +0.6%.
Futures at 6:30, Dow +0.3%. S&P +0.1%. Nasdaq flat. Crude +0.8% to $82.27. Gold -0.1% to $1971.50. Bitcoin -0.3% to $27,307.
Ten-year Treasury Yield -2 bps to 4.10%

Today's Economic Calendar

3:15 Fed's Bostic Speech
7:30 Challenger Job-Cut Report
8:30 Initial Jobless Claims
8:30 Personal Income and Outlays
9:00 Fed's Collins Speech
9:45 Chicago PMI
10:30 EIA Natural Gas Inventory
3:00 PM Farm Prices
4:30 PM Fed Balance Sheet

Companies reporting earnings today »

What else is happening...

Report: Federal Reserve quietly issues warnings to regional banks.

UBS (UBS) reports mega profit skewed by Credit Suisse takeover.

Economy watch: U.S. Q2 GDP revised down to 2.1% from 2.4%.

Visa (V), Mastercard (MA) said to be planning credit card fee hikes.

Cannabis watch: DEA may reclassify drug as less risky.

U.S. expands AI chip export curbs to some Middle East countries.

CrowdStrike (CRWD) in charts: Subscription revenue, ARR expand.

Baidu (BIDU) among first companies to get China nod for AI models.

On the move: Palantir (PLTR) rides the latest wave of AI euphoria.

Is Ambarella (AMBA) a takeover candidate amid share price plunge?

Known to most as Uranium Pinto Beans, Jason has more than 15 years under his belt of trading stocks, options and currencies. His expertise primarily lies in chart analysis, and he has a strong eye for undervalued stock. Because he’s got the ability to identify great risk/reward trades he usually enjoys taking the path less traveled and reaping the benefits from the adventure.

He is a co-founder of Option Millionaires, and he is best known for his weekly webinars with Scott, as well as his high level training webinars and charts found in the forums.

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