Wednesday Morning Reads
- Trump’s Call to Return Home
- Jerome Powell Putting Stamp on Fed
- The Fed Enabled a Record Expansion
- The Largest Mortgage Origination Volume on Record
- Systemic Risk
- ‘Tesla-Like’ Electric Delivery Vans
- $16 Billion Tiffany Deal Collapses Over Tariffs
- Trapped by Pandemic
- Problem for Disney
- Will Money Printing Cause Inflation?
It's been a rough last few days for the Nasdaq, which touched correction territory over the course of three sessions as six of the biggest tech stocks lost more than $1T in market value. While it was the fastest 10% plunge in history (the previous record pace was six sessions notched back in March), 2020 has been a year for the record books. Wall Street now appears to be regaining some footing, with Nasdaq futures ahead by nearly 2%, and contracts tied to the Dow and S&P 500 up 0.6% and 0.8%, respectively. On the economic calendar, the Labor Department is set to release its Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey for July, and while it is somewhat dated, the report should give investors some insight into the labor market.
Shares of AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN) tumbled over 8% in after-hours trading on Tuesday after the drugmaker paused clinical trials of its experimental COVID-19 vaccine, with a participant in a U.K. study experiencing an unexplained illness. However, the stock has since pared losses to 1% as British health minister Matt Hancock explained that the procedure is "not necessarily" a setback and it "depends on what they find when they do the investigation." AstraZeneca confirmed that the pause "is a routine action" and it was trying to expedite the review to "minimize any potential impact on the trial timeline."
Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) is recovering this morning, up 6.6% to $352/share, following the stock's largest one day drop in history. The Elon Musk-led company plunged more than 21% on Tuesday after S&P Dow Jones Indices decided against adding the EV maker to the S&P 500. While Tesla tanked, electric vehicle newbie Nikola (NASDAQ:NKLA) soared over 40% after inking a partnership with General Motors (NYSE:GM). The latter will help bring Nikola's Badger pickup truck to market and become the exclusive supplier of fuel cell technology for Nikola's upcoming Class 7 and 8 semi trucks.
Slack Technologies (NYSE:WORK) had a rocky return from Labor Day weekend as shares slumped as much as 20% after its earnings report showed calculated billings missing expectations. The company additionally forecast revenue to grow about 33% this quarter, compared with the 49% jump in Q2, marking a bit of a missed opportunity given work-from-home trends. Putting it in perspective: Video-conferencing company Zoom (NASDAQ:ZM) showed 355% growth during the coronavirus pandemic, while Slack may also be having a tough time competing with Microsoft Teams (NASDAQ:MSFT).
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) isn't taking it easy in its now-litigated fight with Epic Games, countersuing the Fortnite game maker for breach of contract over the in-game payment system it created to bypass the App Store. "Although Epic portrays itself as a modern corporate Robin Hood, in reality it is a multibillion-dollar enterprise that simply wants to pay nothing for the tremendous value it derives from the App Store," Apple said in the filing. It also took a swipe at Tencent (OTCPK:TCEHY), owner of 40% of Epic: "Tencent (which has its own competing app store, one of the largest in the world), also seeks to dismantle the App Store's entire business model to advance its own economic interests."
Boris Johnson's government will publish draft legislation today that could weaken clauses on state aid and customs arrangements for Northern Ireland, as well as undermine Britain's Withdrawal Agreement with the EU. The suggestion that the U.K. might not fully honor its deal with the bloc already prompted Jonathan Jones - head of the government's legal department - to resign yesterday, marking the sixth senior government official to step down this year. On watch: How the British government plans to use the U.K. internal market bill to shave off bits of the Northern Ireland protocol that it doesn't like, particularly in the event that a free trade agreement cannot be reached to replace Britain's single-market membership.
Cindy Holland, one of Netflix's (NASDAQ:NFLX) highest-ranking and longest-serving executives is leaving, and will be replaced by Bela Bajaria, who is being promoted to vice president of global TV. Holland had been with Netflix for 18 years and was a key architect in the company's shift from DVDs by mail to creating original streaming content like House of Cards, Orange is the New Black and Stranger Things. The decision comes just weeks after Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos became a co-chief executive of the company along with Reed Hastings.
Criticism of Disney's (NYSE:DIS) live-action remake of Mulan is growing after the film's end credits revealed a "special thanks" to government entities in Xinjiang, where China is accused of committing rights abuses against millions of Uighur Muslims. It also included the public security bureau in the city of Turpan, where there are believed to be over a dozen "re-education camps" that hold Uighurs in extra-judicial detention. The movie, which was made for $200M before marketing, was already the subject of controversy following social media comments made by Mulan star, Liu Yifei, supporting the Hong Kong police force's crackdown on the city's pro-democracy movement.
What else is happening...
Pandemic's back-to-school season could bring record retail spending.
Tuesday's Key Earnings
In Asia, Japan -1%. Hong Kong -0.6%. China -1.9%. India -0.5%.
In Europe, at midday, London +1%. Paris +0.8%. Frankfurt +1%.
Futures at 6:20, Dow +0.6%. S&P +0.8%. Nasdaq +1.9%. Crude +1.8% to $37.43. Gold -0.4% to $1935.70. Bitcoin +0.8% to $10201.
Ten-year Treasury Yield flat at 0.69%
Today's Economic Calendar