Morning Brief

What to watch today: Dow to fall, Amazon to hit $1 trillion, again, and Rometty out as IBM CEO


A volatile final day of January could be ahead, as headlines surrounding the impact of the coronavirus continue to emerge and U.S. stock futures point to a lower open. Thursday was a prime example, with the Dow falling as many as 244 points and then rallying along with the other major averages to finish higher. The Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq remain poised to post their fifth straight month of gains, although they could also post a second straight weekly loss for the first time in four months. (CNBC)

US Treasury yields rise after briefly sending a recession signal (CNBC)

The World Health Organization said the fast-spreading coronavirus that's now infected more than 9,800 people across the world is a global health emergency, a rare designation that helps the international agency mobilize financial and political support to contain the outbreak. Shortly before, the U.S. confirmed the nation's first person-to-person transmission of the virus. (CNBC)

* Facebook to remove coronavirus misinformation after WHO declares global emergency (Reuters)
* State Department issues 'do not travel' advisory for China, asks those in the country to consider leaving (CNBC)

Two patients from the same family in England have tested positive for the coronavirus. England's Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty said today his team was "working rapidly to identify any contacts the patients had," in order to prevent further spread. (CNBC)

The week ends with a busy morning of U.S. economic data, beginning with December personal income and spending at 8:30 a.m. ET. The Chicago purchasing managers index is out at 9:45 a.m. ET, and the University of Michigan's final January consumer sentiment index is out at 10 a.m. ET. Dow components Caterpillar (CAT), Exxon Mobil (XOM) and Chevron (CVX) highlight this morning's quarterly earnings report. No reports are scheduled for after the bell. (CNBC)

Caterpillar earnings top expectations, but CEO warns about 'global economic uncertainty' (CNBC)

Shares of Amazon (AMZN) climbed nearly 9% in premarket trading after smashing earnings expectations for the fourth quarter. The company's market cap surged above $1 trillion. Amazon first hit a $1 trillion market cap in September 2018 but went below that level after the stock market at the time tanked. Apple (AAPL), Microsoft (MSFT) and Alphabet (GOOGL) are all currently above the trillion-dollar threshold. (CNBC)

Jeff Bezos' net worth jumps by over $12 billion after Amazon's big quarter (CNBC)

IBM shares jumped as much as 5% in the premarket after the company said Arvind Krishna will become its 10th CEO, replacing Ginni Rometty, effective April 6. During Rometty's tenure as CEO, which began in 2012, shares of IBM fell about 26%, compared to the S&P 500's advance of 160%. (CNBC)


Retiring Sen. Lamar Alexander said he'll vote against any proposals for further witnesses in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, dealing a blow to Democrats. if the GOP-majority chamber votes, likely today, not to allow that new content, then the trial could quickly proceed to a final vote on whether to acquit Trump or remove him from office. (CNBC)

* House of Representatives passes two measures limiting Trump's ability to go to war with Iran (CNBC)

Sen. Bernie Sanders has jumped into a virtual tie with former Vice President Joe Biden nationally just before the first nominating contests in the 2020 Democratic presidential primary, according to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released today. Sen. Elizabeth Warren is in third, while former Mayor Mike Bloomberg leaped ahead of Mayor Pete Buttigieg for fourth. (CNBC)

* Sanders backed by 200,000-member postal workers union in 2020 primary (CNBC)

After more than three years of tough negotiations between British and European officials, its departure from the EU is finally taking place today at 6 p.m. ET. The departure will mark the start of a "transition period" in which the U.K. remains a member of the single market and customs union, but begins negotiations with the EU in the hope of striking a free trade deal. (CNBC)

One Medical parent 1Life Healthcare (ONEM) priced its initial public offering at $14 per share, at the bottom of the expected range of $14-$16 per share. The health care services firm, which is not yet profitable, raised $245 million in gross proceeds through JPMorgan (JPM) and Morgan Stanley (MS).

Here's a look at the road to Sunday's Super Bowl by the numbers: After more than 4,000 plays, 1,000 points and 125 touchdowns between them, the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs made it to the big game. The Chiefs have relied on a big-play passing game led by quarterback Patrick Mahomes, while the Niners have had plenty of success on the defensive side. (AP)


Dow component Visa (V) matched Street forecast with quarterly earnings of $1.46 per share, but the payment network operator's revenue came in below estimates. After-the-bell Thursday, Visa also saw a 14% increase in operating expenses during the quarter as it spends more on rewards and incentives for cardholders.

Amgen (AMGN) reported better-than-expected adjusted quarterly profit and revenue. However, the biotech company gave a weaker than expected full year forecast, due to lower interest income and its recently acquired stake in China's BeiGene, which is currently unprofitable.

Electronic Arts (EA) reported adjusted quarterly profit of $2.52 per share, a penny above estimates, with revenue essentially in line. However, the videogame maker gave a weaker than expected current quarter revenue forecast, in part due to a delayed launch for its "NBA Live" game.

Levi Strauss (LEVI) reported strong adjusted quarterly earnings of 26 cents per share, but the apparel maker's revenue was slightly short of forecasts. The company also gave an upbeat full year earnings forecast, as well as announcing a $100 million stock buyback and initiating a dividend of 8 cents per share. Levi Strauss also announced it has about half its stores in China due to the coronavirus outbreak and will take a financial hit as a result.

Marathon Petroleum (MPC) is exploring the sale of its Speedway gasoline station division, Bloomberg reported. Marathon said last year it was seeking to spin off Speedway, which has about 4,000 locations in the U.S.

Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) was ordered by a California judge to pay a $344 million fine, in a case accusing the company of deceptively marketing its surgical mesh devices. The company said it would appeal the decision, adding that it "responsibly communicated the risks and benefits" of the device.


Atari, the arcade game company that ushered in the gaming revolution in the 1980s, is opening eight video game-themed hotels across the U.S., including ones in Las Vegas, Denver, Chicago and Seattle. "Atari Hotels level up hotel entertainment with fully immersive experiences for every age and gaming ability, including the latest in VR and AR (Virtual and Augmented Reality)," the company said. (AP)