U.S. stock futures regained lost ground Friday morning after the government reported that the number of payrolls had risen by a better-than-expected 1.763 million in July. Economists polled by Dow Jones had projected 1.264 million new jobs. The unemployment rate fell from 11.1% to 10.2%, also better than Dow Jones estimates. After the report, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures neared breakeven after moderate losses earlier in the premarket. S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures were down fractionally. The major stock indexes entered Friday's session riding strong weekly gains. The Dow and Nasdaq were up more than 3% for the week and the S&P 500 has gained 2.4%.
President Donald Trump signed executive orders Thursday night banning U.S. companies from doing business with Tencent and ByteDance, respective parent companies of WeChat and TikTok. The ban will take effect in 45 days. "The United States must take aggressive action against the owners of TikTok to protect our national security," Trump said in one executive order. In the other order, Trump said WeChat "automatically captures vast swaths of information from its users. This data collection threatens to allow the Chinese Communist Party access to Americans' personal and proprietary information." Tencent's Hong Kong-listed shares dropped 5% over night.
Uber Technologies dropped more than 2% in the premarket after the ride-hailing giant posted a bigger loss for the previous quarter than analysts expected. The company reported a loss of $1.02 per share. Analysts polled by Refinitiv expected a loss of 86 cents per share. Gross bookings for rides also missed analyst forecasts, though that was partially offset by better-than-expected Uber Eats bookings during the Covid crisis.
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., introduced a bill that would require billionaires to pay a one-time 60% tax on the wealth gains made between March 18, 2020, and Jan. 1, 2021. Funds from that tax would be used to pay for out-of-pocked health-care expenses for Americans over a one-year period. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos would be required to pay more than $42 billion in taxes under this bill, while Tesla's Elon Musk would have to pay over $27 billion.
China reported a 7.2% increase in exports thanks in large part to strong demand for medical supplies due to the coronavirus pandemic. Economists polled by Reuters expected exports to fall by 0.2%. However, Martin Rasmussen of Capital Economics said the upside to Chinese exports growth may be bounded by limited demand for pandemic-related products.