Here are the most important news, trends and analysis that investors need to start their trading day:
- Stock futures rise after S&P 500, Nasdaq broke 3-day losing streaks
- Data on wholesale inflation, jobless claims out before the bell
- Banks, health-related companies see shares rise on strong results
- FDA vaccine panel gets ready to consider Moderna, J&J boosters
- Foreclosures surge as Covid mortgage bailouts expire
Dow futures gained nearly 300 points Thursday as investors consider a flood of strong bank and health-care-related earnings as well as data on wholesale inflation and jobless claims. The 10-year Treasury yield dipped to around 1.53%, one day after minutes from the Federal Reserve's latest meeting revealed a "gradual tapering process" of bond purchases could begin by mid-November. U.S. oil prices continued to power higher, jumping to more than $81 per barrel. Bitcoin was up around $58,000 after topping that level overnight. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq on Wednesday broke three-session losing streaks. However, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell for a fourth straight session.
The government was out with two key economics reports before Thursday's Wall Street open: the September producer price index and initial jobless claims. First-time filings for unemployment benefits dropped to a Covid-era low of 293,000 for the week ended Oct. 9, fewer claims than expected. Headline PPI and core PPI, which excludes food, energy and trade, rose 8.6% and 5.9% from a year ago, respectively, similar to August's year-over-year increases. Thursday's wholesale inflation came after Wednesday's elevated consumer inflation data. With price pressures mounting, the Social Security cost-of-living adjustment next year will be 5.9%, the biggest boost in about 40 years.
The pace of earnings season accelerated Thursday, with slew of banks reporting quarterly results before the bell and their shares moving higher in premarket trading.
- Bank of America was first up, saying third-quarter earnings and revenue beat estimates on strong advisory and asset management results.
- Morgan Stanley beat estimates with quarterly earnings and revenue on record investment banking and asset management results.
- Wells Fargo posted a jump in profit in the third quarter, boosted by a release of credit loss reserves. Revenue beat estimates.
- Citigroup's quarterly profit and revenue beat expectations on strong trading results.
- Walgreens administered twice as many Covid vaccines as expected.
- UnitedHealth raised its full-year outlook.
The FDA's vaccine advisory group meets Thursday to consider a booster for Moderna's two-shot Covid regimen. FDA scientists on Tuesday declined to take a stance it. The agency's panel then meets Friday to consider a booster for Johnson & Johnson's one-dose vaccine and mix-and-match vaccine data. A highly anticipated NIH study, released Wednesday, suggests J&J recipients are better off getting a booster from Pfizer or Moderna. Also on Wednesday, the FDA said data provided by J&J suggests recipients may benefit from an additional dose. A booster of Pfizer's two-shot vaccine was approved for certain groups of people last month.
Foreclosures are starting to jump as government and private sector programs designed to help homeowners deal with the economic fallout of the Covid pandemic have begun to expire. Mortgage lenders began the foreclosure process on 25,209 properties in the third quarter, a 32% increase from the second quarter. On a year-over-year basis, it's a 67% rise from the third quarter of 2020, according to Attom, a mortgage data firm. States with the largest number of new foreclosures were California, Texas, Florida, New York and Illinois.