Morning Brief

What to watch today: Dow to rebound after starting Q2 with heavy losses



U.S. stock futures were pointing to a rebound for the Dow at today's open ahead of what's expected to be another unprecedented number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits. The Dow closed nearly 4.5% lower on the first day of the second quarter after logging the worst first-quarter ever. (CNBC)

The 10-year Treasury yield dropped to under 0.6% early Thursday as global coronavirus cases approach 1 million. Oil futures bounced about 10% from highly depressed levels after President Donald Trump said he expected Saudi Arabia and Russia to reach a deal soon to end their price war. (CNBC)

Economists expect that 4 million to 5 million, or even more, workers filed for jobless claims last week. The Labor Department releases its weekly tally at 8:30 a.m. ET. The consensus forecast is for 3.1 million first-time claims after the previous week's record high of nearly 3.3. million. (CNBC)

Tomorrow, the government issues its monthly report on job creation. However, the March numbers are expected to show little impact from the outbreak because the survey period went only to about the middle of the month — before the effects of the stay-at-home orders were felt.


The president is set to meet with the leaders of at least seven major energy companies on Friday as U.S. producers struggle to break even after crude prices recently hit 18-year lows. The Trump administration is considering halting some domestic flights and rail lines between cities hard hit by the virus. (CNBC)

IRS backs down and won't require Social Security recipients to file tax returns for stimulus checks (CNBC)
Coronavirus Costing Trump Properties Over $1 Million Daily in Lost Revenue (WSJ)

White House health advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said the first human trial testing a potential vaccine to prevent COVID-19 is "on track" with public distribution still projected in 12 to 18 months. He called it the "ultimate game changer" in the fight to control the pandemic. (CNBC)

Fauci to receive enhanced personal security after getting threats (NY Times)
America's top doctor appears to have softened his stance over the effectiveness of face masks

With coronavirus testing becoming more widespread, U.S. confirmed cases surged to more than 216,700, according to Johns Hopkins University data. American fatalities rose to 5,137. New York is the hardest hit state. The White House, predicting a "very, very painful two weeks," estimates a U.S. death toll of 100,000 to 240,000.

Coronavirus could kill more Americans than WWI, Vietnam or Korean wars (CNBC)

Globally, known cases reached about 942,000 — nearing 1 million since the outbreak started in China in December. There have been 47,521 worldwide deaths and about 186,000 recoveries. Italy has the second most cases globally at more than 110,500, nearly half the U.S. total. But it has the most deaths, 13,155.

Boeing — whose stock has been slammed by the coronavirus economic halt and last year's grounding of its 737 Max fleet — is reportedly set to start offering early retirement and buyout packages to workers. Several media outlets, including The Wall Street Journal, said that an internal announcement is expected as soon as today.

British Airways to reportedly suspend 36,000 of its employees

PVH Corporation (PVH), behind popular brands including Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger, beat estimates on fiscal fourth quarter earnings and revenue. However, PVH sees the pandemic having a significant impact on business. CEO Mann Chirico said on "Mad Money" he expects the industry to go through some "significant consolidation" (CNBC)

PVH CEO discloses COVID-19 diagnosis, says 'I'm fine' (CNBC)

SoftBank Group said it has terminated a $3 billion tender offer for additional WeWork shares agreed last year with shareholders, including ousted co-founder Adam Neumann, drawing threats of legal action from other board members. (Reuters)

Former Vice President Joe Biden is calling for moving the Democratic National Convention from mid-July to August, making him the most prominent member of his party to say the convention must be rescheduled because of the coronavirus outbreak. (NY Times)


CarMax (KMX) reported quarterly earnings of $1.30 per share, 17 cents above estimates, with revenue also beating forecasts. The car retailer did say it has seen demand progressively deteriorate amid the spread of the coronavirus.

Walgreens (WBA) came in 5 cents ahead of estimates with adjusted quarterly profit of $1.52 per share, with revenue also coming in above Wall Street projections. It also said the financial impact of COVID-19 is still uncertain.

Stanley Black & Decker (SWK) withdrew its 2020 financial outlook, saying the virus pandemic will hurt its results due to demand disruptions. The tool maker is also reducing non-essential staffing.

Zoom Video Communications (ZM) – Zoom said daily users of its video conferencing technology soared to more than 200 million in March, compared to a prior high of 10 million.

AMC Entertainment (AMC) has hired restructuring lawyers, according to the Wall Street Journal. This comes as the movie theater operator's locations are all closed to due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Carnival Corp. (CCL) raised $6.25 billion in a new debt and equity sale, including $4 billion in bonds with a yield of 11.5%. The cruise line had paid just a 1% yield when it raised debt in October.

Altria (MO) was sued by the Federal Trade Commission, in a move aimed at forcing the tobacco producer to sell its stake in e-cigarette maker Juul Labs. The FTC claims Altria's purchase of the Juul stake was anti-competitive.

Shopify (SHOP) suspended its 2020 forecast, with the Canadian e-commerce company pointing to uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus outbreak.

General Electric (GE) is seeking to replace its $20 billion in revolving loans with a $15 billion in shorter-maturity credit, according to a Reuters report.


Restaurants are turning to bundling in-demand consumer products, such as toilet paper and gloves, with food and drinks to reach out to their communities even as the future of their businesses is unclear. However, a Subway in Canada sparked backlash after launching a promotion for a free face mask for every purchase of two sandwiches. (CNBC)