Dow rises 285 points on investor optimism over debt ceiling extension

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US stocks were higher on Thursday as investors cheered the proposed debt ceiling extension until December.

The benchmark S&P 500 edged higher Thursday while the tech-heavy Nasdaq-100 rose. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up nearly 300 points.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 9:30 a.m. ET open on Thursday:

Worries were mounting as US legislators engaged in a tense standoff ahead of an October 18 deadline to raise the debt ceiling or default on the country’s debt.

On Wednesday, both parties made some headway after Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he was willing to offer a short-term debt ceiling extension until December.

Beyond the political drama, investors continue to anticipate when the Federal Reserve will begin tapering asset purchases amid inflationary pressures driven by a surge in commodity prices, particularly oil, and supply chain issues.

“We believe that inflation will continue to build up over the coming months, peaking close to 5% core CPI early next year before moving lower – an environment that resembles reflation more than stagflation,” Gargi Chaudhuri, head of iShares investment strategy, said in a note Thursday.

The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note rose to 1.55 % Thursday from 1.524% Wednesday. Yields and prices move inversely.

US jobless claims totaled 326,000 last week, the Labor Department announced Thursday, coming in below the median forecast of 348,000 from economists surveyed by Bloomberg. It also snapped a three-week streak of gains.

In cryptocurrencies, bitcoin was 3.38% higher to $54,156 after breaching $55,000 on Wednesday when Securities and Exchange Chair Gary Gensler said he has no plans to ban crypto.

Meanwhile, dogecoin spin-off shiba inu is continuing its monster rally, having risen by over 300% in a week to a $12 billion valuation, according to Coinmarketcap. For the month, it gained around 350% in a month – roughly what bitcoin has gained in a year.

Natural gas prices fell 4% after Russian leaders including President Vladimir Putin offered to stabilize the European gas market by indicating that supply could increase through Ukraine. The trend spilled over to other commodities.

West Texas Intermediate crude oil slipped 0.71%, to $76.88 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, fell 0.48%, to $80.69 per barrel.

Gold edged lower by 0.52%, to $1,755.04 per ounce.

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US stocks struggle to recover from Evergrande rout while investors await the outcome of Fed meeting

Traders work at the trading floor in the New York Stock Exchange on Aug. 19, 2021.
New York Stock Exchange on Aug. 19, 2021.

US stocks struggled to regain their footing Tuesday following a brutal sell-off sparked by beleaguered Chinese developer Evergrande during Monday’s session. Investors, meanwhile, are awaiting the outcome of the Federal Reserve’s two-day Federal Open Market Committee meeting beginning that kicked off on Tuesday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 5oo both ended lower, while the Nasdaq eked out a gain.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 4:00 p.m. close on Tuesday:

“Financial markets have Evergrande as the top story and will enter wait-and-see mode until a meaningful update from the Chinese government,” Edward Moya, senior market analyst at foreign exchange firm Oanda, said in a note Tuesday. “The Evergrande story won’t lead to contagion in the US but there are so many questions about who will be protected once China says ‘enough’ and swoops in.”

Evergrande, China’s second-largest property developer, has more than $300 billion in liabilities and could miss key interest payments due Thursday. There are no signs yet that the Chinese government will step in to save the company.

On top of Evergrande concerns, investors are anxious about the Federal Reserve’s potential tapering of stimulus and the risk of a prolonged period of inflation.

While several analysts, including those at BlackRock Investment Institute, do not expect Fed Chair Jerome Powell to announce any policy change this month, they are still keeping a close eye on any signal of how he plans to scale back monetary support, which includes tapering asset purchases.

“We expect the Fed to start normalizing policy rates in 2023, a much slower pace than market pricing for lift-off in 2022 indicates,” the BlackRock analysts said in a note.

Another issue that might be discussed, according to Moya, is the multi-million-dollar stock purchases of Dallas and Boston Federal Reserve presidents Robert Kaplan and Eric Rosengren, which involved purchases of big-name firms like Apple, Alibaba, and Tesla.

“If the Fed struggles to deal with intensifying scrutiny after their ethics review, the FOMC could lose two of its hawkish members,” Moya said.

Elsewhere, Fintech firm Revolut plans to offer commission-free stock trading to US clients as the London-based startup takes on rivals like Robinhood and Square amid a boom in retail investing, CNBC first reported Tuesday.

In cryptocurrencies, the US Department of the Treasury on Tuesday revealed it will sanction Russian-owned Suex for its role in laundering financial transactions for ransomware actors, marking the first time the agency has ever blacklisted a cryptocurrency exchange.

Meanwhile, Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, is shutting down cryptocurrency derivative products for existing customers in Australia by the end of the year, the latest bid by the exchange to appease regulators.

Bitcoin hovered just above $42,000 after a broader cryptocurrency sell-off Monday.

Oil prices rebounded. West Texas Intermediate crude climbed 0.31%, to $70.51 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, rose 0.88%, to $74.57 per barrel.

Gold jumped 0.56%, to $1,774.99 per ounce.

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US stocks close mixed as traders digest new economic data ahead of Fed policy meeting

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  • US stocks pared losses but the S&P 500 and Dow still closed in the red on Thursday.
  • Spending at US retailers and restaurants handedly beat economist expectations and soared in August
  • Keith Gill’s former employer was reportedly fined for not properly monitoring the meme-stock trader’s activity.
  • Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

US stocks fluctuated into the close, with the S&P 500 and Dow ending slightly in the red Thursday, as traders dissected how the latest batch of economic data will impact the Federal Reserve’s timeline for tapering back its asset purchases. The materials and energy sectors lagged in the S&P 500.

Spending at US retailers and restaurants handedly beat economist expectations and soared in August. Retail sales gained 0.7% last month, while economists surveyed by Bloomberg expected sales to drop by 0.8% through the month.

Meanwhile, more Americans filed for unemployment than expected last week. Initial jobless claims jumped to an unadjusted 332,000 last week, versus 330,000 expected. It also snapped a two-week streak of declines and placed claims just above pandemic-era lows.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 4 p.m. ET close on Thursday:

“While daily gyrations and headlines questioning the market’s grit can be sources of consternation, we remain optimistic on the medium-term outlook for U.S. stocks,” said Tony DeSpirito, BlackRock’s CIO of US fundamental equities. “The key components of an investment thesis ― earnings, fundamentals and valuations ― support a case for continued strength, even as longer-term return expectations should be tempered.”

The former employer of Keith Gill, the investor whose bullishness on GameStop contributed to a trading frenzy in the meme stock earlier this year, is reportedly facing allegations that its subsidiary didn’t properly supervise “Roaring Kitty” and his trading activity. Gill worked for MML Investors Services, a subsidiary of MassMutual, until his resignation in January.

A former cryptocurrency hedge fund manager who pleaded guilty to securities fraud after prosecutors said he ran a Ponzi scheme was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison, the US attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York said. The US attorney said 24-year old Stefan Qin lied about returns on his $90 million fund and took money from its accounts to fund personal expenses, including a penthouse apartment in New York City.

West Texas Intermediate crude was little changed at $72.63 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, slid 0.32%, to $75.70 per barrel, at intraday lows.

Gold tumbled 2.21%, to $1,755.10 per ounce.

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US stocks trade mixed as investors weigh impact of new economic data on Fed policy

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US stocks were on Thursday as traders digested how the latest batch of economic data will impact the Federal Reserve’s timeline for easing its stimulus measures.

Spending at US retailers and restaurants handedly beat economist expectations and soared in August. Retail sales gained 0.7% last month, while economists surveyed by Bloomberg expected sales to drop by 0.8% through the month.

Meanwhile, more Americans filed for unemployment than expected last week. Initial jobless claims jumped to an unadjusted 332,000 last week, versus 330,000 expected. It also snapped a two-week streak of declines and placed claims just above pandemic-era lows.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 9:30 a.m. ET open on Thursday:

Weaker economic data means the Fed is unlikely to announce a taper at next week’s FOMC meeting, according to macro economists at Guggenheim. While an announcement at the November meeting seems the market’s base-case, upcoming drama in Washington over the debt ceiling and infrastructure bill could affect that decision, they added.

Bitcoin hovered around $48,000. Coinbase said on Wednesday it plans to expand its product offering to include trading in futures and derivatives.

West Texas Intermediate crude fell 0.35%, to $72.37 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, slid 0.32%, to $75.23 per barrel.

Gold 1.9%% to $1,760.10 per ounce.

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US stocks fall as traders remain cautious on economic growth outlook

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE)

US stocks closed lower on Thursday as investors remained cautious on the outlook for global growth in light of recent economic data. Every sector within the S&P 500 besides financials fell.

Weekly jobless claims fell to 310,000 last week, setting a fresh pandemic-era low, according to Thursday data from the Labor Department. Economists expected claims to slide to 335,000. The print marked a second straight weekly decline.

Momentum also faded in light of the Federal Reserve’s August Beige Book, which noted that economic growth downshifted last month.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 4 p.m. ET close on Thursday:

GameStop slid as much as 10% before paring losses Thursday after the video gamer retailer favored by social media traders posted a quarterly adjusted loss that was wider than anticipated and opted not to offer specific financial guidance.

Bitcoin traded around $46,600 Thursday morning after slipping near $44,000 in the early morning hours. The world’s largest cryptocurrency is being outperformed by Solana, which hit an all-time high of $216.47 overnight. The altcoin is up over 420% in the last month

West Texas Intermediate crude slide as much as 1.82%, to $68.04 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, slid 1.72%, to $71.35 per barrel, at intraday lows.

Gold was steady around $1796 per ounce.

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US stocks mixed as investors weigh better-than-expected jobless claims against growth concerns

NYSE trader

US stocks were mixed on Thursday, with the S&P 500 and Dow Jones down for the third straight day and the Nasdaq posting a slight gain as investors digested data that showed fewer Americans filed for unemployment benefits than economists forecasted.

Weekly jobless claims fell to 310,000 last week, setting a fresh pandemic-era low, according to Thursday data from the Labor Department. Economists expected claims to slide to 335,000. The print marked a second straight weekly decline.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 9:30 a.m. ET open on Thursday:

The Federal Reserve said there’s been a slight deceleration in economic activity from the moderate pace of recovery in early July through August in its Beige Book report on Wednesday. Wall Street is eagerly awaiting further signals from the central bank over its timeline for scaling back its pandemic-era stimulus measures.

Four Federal Reserve officials signaled on Wednesday that the central bank could start tapering its asset purchases later this year, despite a disappointing August jobs report.

Bitcoin traded around $47,000 Thursday morning after slipping near $44,000 in the early morning hours. The world’s largest cryptocurrency is being outperformed by Solana, which hit an all-time high of $216.47 overnight. The altcoin is up over 420% in the last month.

West Texas Intermediate crude fell 1.6% to $68.18 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark fell 1.25% to $71.68 per barrel.

Gold was steady around $1,795.

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US stocks fall after massive miss on August jobs report

NYSE Trader surprised

US fell Friday after the August jobs report badly missed economist expectations.

The US added 235,000 payrolls in August, badly missing the median estimate of 733,000 added jobs. Meanwhile the unemployment rate fell to 5.2% from 5.4%, matching estimates. The month demonstrated the influence the coronavirus Delta variant had on the labor market recovery.

The report has prompted hopes that the Fed will continue its support for the economy for longer.

“The Fed has hung its hat on the assumption that people are starting to return to work, and unfortunately today’s number will be a disappointment to them,” said Seema Shah, Principal Global Investors’ chief strategist. “After having indicated a taper was likely in the next few months, August payrolls perhaps throws that into disarray.”

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 9:30 a.m. ET open on Friday:

Shah said that while inflation has clearly met levels that indicate “substantial further progress” in the economy, it doesn’t appear to have made a sufficient impression on the Federal Reserve. The US central bank appears much more focused on the employment recovery, and today’s disappointing number may sway the Fed to not scale back its asset purchases until November, or potentially later, she added.

“Friday’s weaker-than-expected jobs puts less pressure on the Fed to taper its stimulus, which is likely to provide a short-term boost for stocks. The stock market loves stimulus and any indication that the Fed will remain fully accommodative is good news for investors,” said Jay Pestrichelli, CEO of investment firm ZEGA Financial.

Warren Buffett’s deputy snowballed his retirement account from $70,000 to $264 million in under 30 years. Ted Weschler explained his strategy, including how he shrugged off investment losses and amassed wealth in a recent interview.

Bitcoin held steady at around $50,800 Friday morning after breaking the $50,000 barrier on Thursday.

West Texas Intermediate crude jumped as much as 0.60%, to $70.40 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, gained 0.78%, to $73.60 a barrel.

Gold climbed 0.92%, to $1,828.10 per ounce.

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Chinese regulators call in Didi and 10 other ride-hailing companies, to tell them to fall in line immediately

Didi Global stock symbol
Chinese ride-hailing app Didi Global raised $4.4 billion in its debut on the New York Stock Exchange.

  • Five Chinese authorities summoned Didi, Meituan and 9 other ride-hailing services to meetings about compliance with rules.
  • The platforms must fix illegal operations such as recruiting unlicensed drivers and vehicles, they said after the Wednesday meetings.
  • It extends Beijing’s regulatory crackdown on the internet and education sectors to the ride hailing industry.
  • Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

Chinese authorities have called in major ride-hailing platform companies, including Didi, to tell them to fall in line with regulations as Beijing’s crackdown on influential sectors continues.

Five government agencies held a joint meeting Wednesday with the platform providers to tell them to check their operations and fix issues such as the use of unapproved drivers and cars, the Department of Transport said in a Thursday statement posted to Weixin.

“The interview pointed out that recently, some platform companies have adopted a variety of marketing methods, vicious competition, and recruited or induced unlicensed drivers and vehicles to ‘bring cars to join’ to carry out illegal operations, disrupt the fair competition market order, and affect the safety and stability of the industry,” the department said in the statement, translated from the original Chinese.

Didi, which has been under close scrutiny from Chinese authorities since going public on New York’s Nasdaq in June, was one of the companies summoned. Also in the meeting were regional industry heavyweights such as e-commerce giant Meituan’s ride hailing service, Geely’s Cao Cao and T3.

Officials laid out five requirements for the platforms. One was that they must operate in strict compliance with laws and regulations, which means they must stop using unlicensed drivers and vehicles immediately.

Another, on ensuring fair competition, said the companies must avoid using false inducements to attract drivers and ensure that drivers are paid fairly – meaning they should not take too big a commission for completed rides.

“The interview requires that each platform company should review its own problems, immediately rectify non-compliance behaviors, jointly maintain a fair and competitive market order, and jointly create a good environment for the standardized and healthy development of the online car-hailing industry,” the Department of Transport’s statement said.

Didi, Meituan and other companies did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

In recent months, China’s regulators have begun a crackdown on key sectors such as tech, education and internet companies, most notably tightening rules around competition and customer data.

Investors have grown increasingly concerned that this has strengthened Beijing’s grip on private companies and data, and stocks have dropped sharply on news of higher scrutiny of industries.

Meituan closed 0.08% higher on the Hong Kong stock exchange, while Cao Cao’s parent company Geely gained 1.81% in Hong Kong by the end of the trading Thursday. Didi’s New York-traded shares were down 1.09% in premarket trading as of 7:22 am E.T. on Thursday.

“Another day, another clampdown. Dip-buyers in China equities will keep dipping their toes. However, I believe we are a long way still from repricing China equities to a level that balances the Government’s ‘enthusiasm’ for common prosperity,” Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at Oanda, said in a note.

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S&P 500, Nasdaq close at records as tech stocks soar on investor optimism

Trader NYSE
Traders work on the floor at the opening bell of the Dow Industrial Average at the New York Stock Exchange on March 18, 2020 in New York.

US stocks closed mostly higher with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq hitting record highs. The Dow pulled back slightly to finish in the red. Shares of Apple rose 3.2% to hit an all-time high, while Amazon, Facebook, and Tesla all gained over 2%.

The S&P 500 is up approximately 20% for the year without so much as a 5% pullback, noted Ryan Detrick, chief market strategist for LPL Financial. The benchmark index has made 53 new all-time highs so far. Only two other years- 1964 and 1995-saw more than 50 new highs before August was over, Detrick said.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 4:00 p.m. ET close on Monday:

In a long-awaited speech Friday, Fed chair Jerome Powell reiterated that the central bank could start tapering asset purchases in 2021 but will likely not raise interest rates until at least 2023 as it continues to monitor the progress of the economic recovery out of the pandemic.

The tech rally that was in full view today still has room to run, according to Wedbush’s Dan Ives. The analyst said that further multiple expansion and strong fundamentals will boost tech stocks up another 7%-10% for the rest of 2021. Additionally, a rotation out of Chinese stocks amid ongoing regulatory concerns will create a “nirvana set up” for FAANG names.

A new roster of meme stocks is emerging. Support.com and Vinco Ventures extended their three-day rallies to over 100% on Monday.

Robinhood tumbled 7% after SEC chairman Gary Gensler told Barron’s banning payment for order flow is “on the table.”

Affirm soared as much as 43% in early morning trading after the buy-now-pay-later fintech partnered with Amazon. Amazon customers will now be able to split purchases over $50 into monthly payments.

Legendary investor John Paulson, whose bet against the housing market in 2008 made him a billionaire, said cryptocurrencies are in a bubble and will eventually prove to be worthless.

West Texas Intermediate crude gained 0.38% to $69. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, rose 0.77%, to $73.26 per barrel.

Gold fell 0.35% to $1,813.10 per ounce.

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US stocks mixed as investors digest higher than expected jobless claims and await Powell’s speech

trader chart nyse
A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, December 1, 2008. U.S stocks stayed near session lows on Monday after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said that the U.S. economy remained under considerable stress.

US stocks were largely flat Thursday morning as traders awaited Fed chair Jerome Powell’s speech at the Jackson Hole Symposium and digested higher than expected jobless claims. The S&P 500 slipped tk% after hitting its 51st record high for 2021 the previous day.

The benchmark index is currently on pace for 78 new highs in 2021, which would be an all-time record year, according to LPL Financial Chief Market Strategist Ryan Detrick.

Investors are laser focused this week on Powell’s speech at the virtual symposium of central bankers on Friday. The head of the US central bank’s words will be scrutinized for any clues about the Fed’s outlook on tapering its asset purchases.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 9:30 a.m. ET open on Thursday:

On the economic data front, weekly jobless claims reached an unadjusted 353,000 last week, the Labor Department announced Thursday morning. That compares to a median estimate of 350,000 claims from economists surveyed by Bloomberg. It was the first increase in claims in 5 weeks.

Not all on Wall Street expect the Fed meeting to make waves within markets. Paolo Zanghieri, senior economist of Generali Investments said that Powell’s speech will be short on tapering details amid persistent risk from rising COVID-19 cases.

“If the Delta variant does not prove too harmful, we expect a clear warning on imminent tapering in September, an announcement in November, followed by an implementation in December,” he said. “Powell is likely to take the opportunity for further clarifying some key aspects of the Fed policy, especially stressing the distinction between asset purchase tapering and rate hikes.”

Bitcoin traded around $47,000 after crossing it’s highest point since Mid-May earlier this week.

West Texas Intermediate crude fell 0.99% to $67.68 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, slid 0.76%, to $71.70 per barrel.

Gold slipped 0.32% to $1,785 per ounce.

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