5 Things to Know

5 things to know before the stock market opens Monday

1. Wall Street to continue three straight weeks of selling

A pedestrian wearing a face mask looks at a smartphone while passing in front of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, on Monday, July 20, 2020.
Michael Nagle | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Dow futures pointed to an over 550 point decline at Wall Street's open as the stock market comes off three straight weeks of selling. A number of factors were pressuring stocks Monday morning.

  • European markets tanked as the U.K. considers another coronavirus lockdown.
  • U.S. tech stocks, once the leaders of the market's recovery from its March 23 coronavirus-bottom, continued lower
  • The death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg threw uncertainty over the Supreme Court into the presidential race 43 days before Election Day
  • There's concern over how the fight over replacing the liberal justice might scuttle chances for additional coronavirus stimulus.

The Nasdaq headed into the new week in correction territory, defined as more than 10% below its most recent closing high, which was a record on Sept. 2.

2. Documents show big banks moved allegedly illicit funds

Bank stocks, including Dow component J.P. Morgan Chase, sank in Monday's premarket as leaked U.S. government files showed that banks reported to regulators $2 trillion of suspicious activity over nearly two decades, according to German broadcaster Deutsche Welle.

Germany's largest lender, Deutsche Bank, appears to have facilitated the most transactions by far in dollar amounts, followed by J.P. Morgan, the U.K.'s Standard Chartered and Bank of New York Mellon, according to the report.

3. Nikola founder to voluntarily step down as executive chairman

Trevor Milton CEO of Nikola
Massimo Pinca | Reuters

Shares of electric truck company Nikola, a favorite among traders on the popular online app Robinhood, lost about 30% in the premarket after founder Trevor Milton early Monday voluntarily stepped down as executive chairman and a member of the board. The announcement comes after short-selling firm Hindenburg Research accused Nikola of fraud. Milton vowed to defend himself.

Stephen Girsky, former vice chairman of General Motors and Nikola director, has been appointed chairman, effective immediately. GM recently took a 11% stake in Nikola and committed to produce Nikola's marquee hydrogen fuel cell electric pickup truck, Badger, by the end of 2022.

4. China's ByteDance says it will own 80% of TikTok U.S. firm

Sheldon Cooper | LightRocket | Getty Images

Beijing-based ByteDance said it would own a majority stake in the new TikTok Global in the U.S., appearing to contradict President Donald Trump's claims that the deal has "nothing to do with China." On Saturday, Trump gave his blessing to a deal that would see Oracle and Walmart take a minority stake in a U.S.-headquartered company TikTok Global. Oracle would become the secure cloud provider and host American users' data in the country.

TikTok faced being shut down in the U.S. on Sunday but that decision has now been delayed for a week. Washington claims that TikTok represents a national security threat because it collects U.S. user data that can be accessed by China's communist government. TikTok has repeatedly denied such allegations.

5. Two GOP senators to oppose a vote on Trump Supreme Court nominee before election

Ginsburg's death Friday at age 87 from pancreatic cancer sparked a war of words in Washington over whether Trump should choose her replacement on the Supreme Court or whether the next president should. Republicans, who hold the slim majority in the Senate, vowed to fill the liberal titan's seat immediately.

GOP Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and Susan Collins of Maine said over the weekend that they oppose taking action before the election on Nov. 3. Back in 2016, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to even hold a hearing on former President Barack Obama's nominee to fill the seat vacated by the late conservativce Justice Antonin Scalia in 2016, citing the election calendar.

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