Morning Brief

What to watch today: Dow set to drop as stimulus talks stall


The Dow Jones Industrial Average was set to open lower Friday as difficulties in Washington over reaching a new Covid-19 stimulus package before the end of the year outweigh Pfizer's (PFE) vaccine taking a step closer to FDA emergency use approval. (CNBC)

While the Dow and S&P 500 saw modest declines Thursday and Nasdaq had a slight gain, all three were tracking to snap multiweek winning streaks. However, heading into Friday trading, the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq were still near their record high closes of earlier this week. (CNBC)


The FDA's commissioner this morning said that the agency is "rapidly" working toward emergency use authorization for the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine. The FDA also said it's "notified the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Operation Warp Speed, so they can execute their plans for timely vaccine distribution." (CNBC)

* Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to holds emergency meeting (CDC)
* Dr. Fauci: Vaccine trials on pregnant women, young kids could begin in January (CNBC)
* Vaccine rollout will be 'a Herculean operation,' Biden coronavirus advisor (CNBC)

The FDA's vaccine advisory committee on Thursday recommended emergency use authorization for Pfizer's vaccine. The FDA doesn't have to follow the advisory committee's recommendation, but the agency often does. The FDA's advisory panel is set to meet next week on whether to recommend emergency use of Moderna's vaccine, which like Pfizer's requires two shots. (CNBC)

* Sanofi-GlaxoSmithKline announce delay in Covid vaccine project (Reuters)
* Merck CEO sees at least 6 more months of social distancing and masks (CNBC)
* Vaccines will get GPS tracking and flight priority, UPS, FedEx say (CNBC)

The House has adjourned until at least Tuesday, pending any agreements on pandemic aid and full-year government funding as efforts on each remained elusive. Meanwhile, a one-week funding measure that passed the House needs to clear the Senate before midnight to avoid a partial government shutdown. (CNBC & AP)

President-elect Joe Biden will travel to Atlanta, Georgia, on Tuesday to stump for Democratic Senate candidates Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock. The stakes could hardly be higher because runoff elections on Jan. 5 could determine which party controls the U.S. Senate. (CNBC)

* Biden picks more Obama veterans for key roles (CNBC)
* Biden, Harris beat Trump as Time's 'Person of the Year' (NBC News)
* Hundreds of GOP members sign onto Texas-led election lawsuit (AP)
* Battleground states urge Supreme Court to reject Texas' bid (CNBC)

Shares of Dow-stock Walt Disney surged more than 7% in Friday's premarket to about $167 each, one day after the entertainment giant said its streaming service, Disney+, now has 86.8 million subscribers. The company expects between 230 million and 260 million subscribers to Disney+ by 2024. (CNBC)

Disney announced a $1 price hike for Disney+ in the U.S. to to $7.99 per month. The company also unveiled a slate of new streaming shows, including Marvel and Star Wars series for Disney+ and drama series and Kardashians content on Hulu. Disney hit an intraday all-time high of $157.46 per share Wednesday. (Reuters)

In a blockbuster week of IPOs, home rental marketplace Airbnb (ABNB) skyrocketed more than 112% in Thursday's debut after food delivery service DoorDash (DASH) surged over 85% on its first trading day Wednesday. While both stocks were giving back a fraction of those gains in Friday's premarket, their market values were off the charts. (CNBC)


Qualcomm (QCOM): Apple (AAPL) has begun building its own cellular modem to be used in future devices, according to a Bloomberg report quoting Apple senior VP of hardware technologies Johny Srouji. Such a move would replace components currently made by Qualcomm.

Nio (NIO): The China-based electric car maker plans to sell up to 69 million new U.S. shares to raise capital. That follows similar moves by Tesla (TSLA) and other electric vehicle companies.

Lululemon (LULU): Lululemon earned $1.16 per share for its latest quarter, compared to a consensus estimate of 88 cents a share. The athletic apparel maker's revenue came in above estimates as well. Lululemon also raised its holiday quarter revenue and profit outlook.

Costco (COST): Costco beat estimates by 24 cents a share, with quarterly earnings of $2.29 per share. The warehouse retailer's revenue also exceeded Wall Street forecasts. Comparable sales jumped 15.4% as the pandemic fueled demand for groceries and other items.

Oracle (ORCL): Oracle came in 6 cents a share above consensus, with quarterly profit of $1.06 per share. The business software giant's revenue matched Street projections. The jump in remote work helped fuel demand for cloud-related offerings.

Broadcom (AVGO): Broadcom reported quarterly earnings of $6.35 per share, 10 cents a hare above estimates. The chip maker's revenue came in slightly above consensus as well. Broadcom also issued a cautious outlook, however, and shares slid.

Ferrari (RACE): Ferrari Chief Executive Officer Louis Camilleri has stepped down, citing personal reasons. Chairman John Elkann will lead the luxury carmaker on an interim basis.

MetLife (MET): MetLife sold its U.S. property and casualty insurance business to Zurich Insurance and its Farmers Exchanges unit for $3.94 billion. MetLife shares were up 1.4% in premarket trading.

Vail Resorts (MTN): The resort operator reported a quarterly loss of $3.82 per share, wider than the loss of $3.54 a share that analysts were predicting. Revenue also came in short of estimates. The company's results were impacted by capacity limitations and closures prompted by the Covid-19 pandemic.