US Index Futures are mixed in premarket trading on Friday, with some correction from recent gains as investors await the start of earnings season in the United States.

By 6:47 AM, Dow Jones futures (DOWI:DJI) rose 109 points, or 0.32%. S&P 500 futures were up 0.04%, while Nasdaq-100 futures fell -0.09%. The 10-year Treasury yield is at 3.785%.

In Europe, besides the anticipation for US earnings, stocks are trading without a clear direction, keeping an eye on the results of technology giants Nokia and Ericsson. Investors are also monitoring the eurozone’s trade balance data, which recorded a deficit of 900 million euros in May; in April, the negative balance had been almost 8 billion euros.

In Asia, stock markets closed the week higher, reflecting signs that US inflation is slowing down, as well as expectations of Chinese stimulus measures to boost activity. In Japan, monthly industrial production fell by 2.20% in May, while on an annual basis, there was a growth of 4.20% in production.

On the US economic calendar for Friday, the University of Michigan will release the preliminary reading of the consumer sentiment index at 10:00 AM. At 1:00 PM, Baker Hughes will report on operating oil rigs.

In the commodities market, West Texas Intermediate crude oil for August is down -0.04%, at $76.86 per barrel. Brent crude oil for September is down -0.11%, trading near $81.34 per barrel. Dalian-traded iron ore futures in China followed the recent trend and rose over 2%, above $115.00 per ton, once again reflecting expectations of Chinese government stimulus.

At Thursday’s close, Wall Street stocks recorded another day of gains, driven by new inflation data suggesting that the Federal Reserve (Fed) is likely nearing the end of its interest rate hike cycle. The Dow Jones rose 47.71 points or 0.14% to 34,395.13 points. The S&P 500 jumped 37.88 points or 0.85% to 4,510.04 points. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 219.61 points or 1.58% to 14,138.57 points.

The Producer Price Index (PPI) showed a monthly increase of 0.1% in June, compared to the previous month, falling below analysts’ forecast of 0.2%. The core index also had a 0.1% variation. Over a 12-month period, the index stabilized, with a variation of 0.1%. As a result, the technology sector led the gains in the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100. Banks also saw an increase.

On the corporate earnings front for Friday, major banks such as JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM), Citigroup (NYSE:C), and Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) will be presenting their financial numbers. BlackRock (NYSE:BLK) and UnitedHealth (NYSE:UNH) are also anticipated.

Wall Street Corporate Highlights for Today

Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL) – Shares in Google parent Alphabet rose 4.9% on Thursday as the launch of artificial intelligence chatbot Bard in Europe and Brazil eased regulatory concerns. The performance outperformed the broader market, buoyed by inflation data. Analysts attributed the rally to Bard’s launch and expansion, with shares in Alphabet rising 41% this year. TD Cowen raised its Alphabet share price target citing expectations of growth in the search business.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) – Cybersecurity expert Steven Adair struggled to investigate a customer email hack by the same group of cyber spies that targeted top US officials. The lack of access to detailed forensic data highlighted the need for more transparency from Microsoft, leading to pressure for additional data free of charge for customers. Migrating to the Microsoft cloud raises concerns about over-reliance on a single provider and the costs associated with cybersecurity.

Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) – The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has extended the deadline for Microsoft’s $69 billion acquisition deal with Activision Blizzard to Aug. The CMA issued its final report in April blocking the takeover but indicated that a restructured deal could address its concerns. Separately, the team responsible for the Nasdaq 100 index is not waiting for the final outcome of Microsoft’s pending $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Activision will be removed from the index before market open on Monday, replaced by digital ad firm The Trade Desk (NASDAQ:TTD).

UPS (NYSE:UPS) – An impending UPS strike could cost more than $7 billion, making it one of the costliest strikes in decades, according to the Anderson Economic Group. These include lost customers, direct wages and disruption to supply chains, increasing shipping costs and fueling inflation. UPS faces an impasse in negotiations with the Teamsters union, with potentially significant consequences for the US economy.

Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS) – Walt Disney CEO Robert Iger announced that the company intends to retain ESPN and seek strategic partners to expand its distribution and content. He also hinted that Disney could sell traditional TV assets due to the growth of streaming services. Iger expressed concern over the ongoing Hollywood writers’ strike, stating it will have a detrimental effect on the business.

Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) – Tesla has started selling the rear-wheel drive Model Y in South Korea, priced at 56.99 million won ($45,139), making it eligible for government subsidies. With a range of 350 km and a maximum speed of 217 km/h, the cars will be delivered between August and September.

Stellantis (NYSE:STLA) – Stellantis will build the new Jeep Compass at the Melfi plant in Italy, making it the fifth model produced there. The new Compass will be based on the STLA Medium platform focused on electric vehicles and will join four other models that have yet to be officially announced. Production is expected to start in 2024, as part of Stellantis’ plan to consolidate production across four main platforms.

Nikola (NASDAQ:NKLA) – Shares in Nikola Corp. had a 61% jump on Thursday after the announcement of a hydrogen deal for their trucks. The electric vehicle manufacturer partnered with BayoTech to acquire hydrogen from its production centers. Nikola postponed its shareholder meeting for the second time this week due to lack of support for its plan to issue new shares.

Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM) – Exxon Mobil has agreed to acquire Denbury for $4.9 billion to expand its energy transition business. The acquisition gives Exxon access to an established CO2 capture operation, boosting its efforts to make carbon capture profitable. The agreement will allow Exxon to offer carbon removal services to its customers, complementing its traditional oil and gas operations.

Virgin Galactic (NYSE:SPCE) – Virgin Galactic has announced that it will launch its second commercial flight next month, following the success of the first flight in June. Details of the mission will be released at a later date, and the flight will be broadcast live.

Leslie’s (NASDAQ:LESL) – Leslie’s shares fell more than 29.6% in premarket trading on Friday after preliminary quarterly results came in below Wall Street expectations and a lower outlook for the year. The company also announced the departure of its chief financial officer. Leslie’s faced declining sales and lowered its 2023 outlook. Scott Bowman was named as the new chief financial officer.

Roivant Sciences (NASDAQ:ROIV) – Roivant Sciences is in talks to sell its investigational drug, RVT-3101, for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease, to Roche (USOTC:RHHBY) in a deal valued at more than $7 billion. The deal could be announced soon, but there are still possibilities for it to collapse or for another buyer to step in. Roivant shares rose 12.8% in response to the news. The experimental drug has shown promising results in clinical studies for the treatment of ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

Caribou Biosciences (NASDAQ:CRBU) – Shares in Caribou Biosciences fell 8.8% in premarket trading on Friday after the biopharmaceutical company announced a $100 million share offering. The company also released positive clinical data from a Phase 1 study for its cell therapy in patients with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The offering is being managed by BofA Securities, Leerink Partners, Evercore ISI and RBC Capital Markets.

Haleon (NYSE:HLN) – Haleon, the consumer health company and manufacturer of Sensodyne, plans to cut hundreds of jobs in the UK and around the world as part of a restructuring. The company was spun off from GSK (NYSE:GSK) last year and has more than 24,000 employees. Haleon seeks a more agile organization and expects to save £300 million over three years.

Acadia Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ACAD) – Shares in Acadia Pharmaceuticals rose 20% in premarket after the company extended rights to drugs to treat a rare neurological disorder.

Theseus Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:THRX) – Shares in Theseus Pharmaceuticals plunged 66% as the company announced it was halting development of a cancer drug candidate.

Perrigo (NYSE:PRGO) – Perrigo has received approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its progestin birth control pill Opill, available over the counter for all ages. The company highlighted that this approval is a significant milestone for women’s health and will transform access to contraception. The pill will be available at retailers in early 2024.

Coinbase (NASDAQ:COIN) – Shares of Coinbase Global were up nearly 25% on Thursday, boosted by a legal victory by Ripple Labs Inc in a lawsuit involving cryptocurrencies. After a judge ruled that Ripple did not violate US securities law, the value of the XRP token (COIN:XRPUSD) soared by as much as 74%, leading to optimism in the crypto market. Coinbase has announced that it will re-list the XRP token on its trading platform.

Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) – Bank of America is using artificial intelligence, virtual reality and the metaverse in its immersive training program for new employees. VR simulations allow employees to practice real-world situations, such as dealing with angry customers or responding to muggings. The company seeks to improve performance and reduce costs through this technology. The approach has been successful, helping employees feel more comfortable and absorb training more quickly. However, Bank of America points out that technology does not replace human connection, but strengthens it by simulating reality.

Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) – Goldman Sachs sold $1 billion in personal loans from Marcus to Varde Partners. This was the second sale of unsecured loans by Goldman’s consumer unit, aimed at reducing the loan book. Varde is an alternative investment company with a significant track record in the public and private credit market. In addition, Goldman Sachs will post its worst quarterly profit in years next week, with a single-digit return on equity, according to Semafor. Writedowns on GreenSky’s consumer lending business and commercial real estate interests are expected to exceed $2 billion.


Nokia  (NYSE:NOK),  Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) – Nokia lowered its full-year outlook and Ericsson reported second-quarter operating profit down 62% year-on-year as consumer spending slowed, impacting sales telecommunications equipment sales. Fears of recession have led companies to cut budgets, postpone upgrades and expansion plans for 5G and broadband networks. The market expects a gradual recovery towards the end of 2023. 

JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) – Analysts are projecting JPMorgan Chase to post second-quarter earnings in excess of $12 billion, equivalent to $1.97 per share. The rise in interest rates is expected to result in a roughly 40% jump in earnings for the largest US bank by assets.

Citigroup (NYSE:C) – Citigroup is expected to report second-quarter earnings of $1.31 per share on Friday on revenue of $19.3 billion, down from same quarter of the previous year, when the bank had a profit of US$ 2.19 per share and income of US$ 19.6 billion. The continued weakness in trading is believed to have negatively impacted the bank’s earnings.

Blackrock (NYSE:BLK) – Analysts expect second-quarter revenue of $4.47 billion, with earnings of $8.50 per share. The company continues to attract capital inflows, particularly into its bond funds. While BlackRock is in a strong position, there are concerns that the growing anti-ESG movement could affect its business. CEO Larry Fink has expressed support for ESG principles, but has also recently avoided using them due to political debates.

UnitedHealth (NYSE:UNH) – Wall Street analysts expect UnitedHealth to report second-quarter earnings of $5.99 per share on revenue of $91 billion.

Progressive (NYSE:PGR) – Progressive’s quarterly results missed Wall Street expectations, leading to a 5.4% drop in the stock on Thursday. Higher auto insurance prices boosted sales, but rising vehicle repair costs hurt earnings. The company faces additional pressure from high claims and booking charges, resulting in further price increases. Second-quarter earnings per share were 57 cents on sales of $14.5 billion.

Fastenal (NASDAQ:FAST) – Fastenal missed Wall Street’s second-quarter earnings estimates, reflecting weaker manufacturing activity. The results highlight that the manufacturing economy still faces challenges. Fastenal reported earnings per share of 52 cents on just under $1.9 billion in sales. Wall Street had expected gains of 53 cents on the dollar from just under $1.9 billion in sales.

Conagra Brands (NYSE:CAG) – Conagra Brands reported fourth-quarter adjusted earnings that beat expectations and announced a dividend increase. While revenue was below forecasts, the dividend increase boosted investor sentiment. The company’s prospects, however, were below analysts’ expectations for fiscal 2024.

Market view

Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA) – According to Cowen & Co. analyst Matthew Ramsay, Nvidia is facing a boom in demand for chips, even as second-quarter revenue forecasts beat expectations. Ramsay raised its revenue forecast for the quarter to $12 billion and also raised its adjusted earnings per share expectations. He highlighted the significant growth in the datacenter segment and said that Nvidia continues to lead in all AI verticals.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) – Microsoft was upgraded to a “Buy” from “Neutral” by UBS, with an increase in the stock price target from $345 to $400. Analysts cited AI-related catalysts as part of this update.

AT&T (NYSE:T) – Analysts at JP Morgan have downgraded AT&T’s stock rating from “Overweight” to “Neutral”. Additionally, the stock price target has been lowered from $22 to $17.

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