Here are five things you must know for Thursday, Oct. 8:
1. — Stock Futures Rise on Stimulus Optimism
Stock futures traded higher Thursday as Wall Street grew more optimistic lawmakers could secure further fiscal stimulus for the U.S. economy even if it comes in the form of smaller relief bills.
Contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 105 points, S&P 500 futures gained 14 points and Nasdaq futures rose 85 points.
Stocks finished sharply higher Wednesday after President Donald Trump said he would consider alternative aid measures such as a new round of stimulus checks, the Paycheck Protection Program and support for airlines. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also signaled support for a standalone airline stimulus bill.
Airlines have begun furloughing or laying off workers following the expiration of a federal prohibition on job cuts tied to the $25 billion in federal aid they received earlier this year. Airlines said they would reverse the furloughs if they received additional help.
“Even though there is uncertainty now about the fiscal stimulus negotiations, regardless of who wins the election, we are likely to have additional fiscal stimulus,” said Nancy Davis, founder of Quadratic Capital and portfolio manager of the Quadratic Interest Rate Volatility and Inflation Hedge ETF (IVOL) – Get Report.
With the uncertainty, she added, “I think it’s important for investors to have a diversified portfolio, with investments that are uncorrelated to each other. We should expect more uncertainty going forward.”
2. — Thursday’s Calendar: Jobless Claims, Domino’s Pizza Earnings
The economic calendar in the U.S. Thursday includes weekly Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m. ET. Economists forecast the number of Americans applying for first-time unemployment benefits last week to have dipped to 819,000 from 837,000 a week earlier. Data from California aren’t included in the latest tally because the state has stopped accepting new jobless claims due to a processing backlog and in an effort to combat fraud.
Domino’s Pizza (DPZ) – Get Report and Acuity Brands (AYI) – Get Report report earnings Thursday.
3. — Regeneron Seeks Emergency Use for Its Covid Antibody Cocktail
Shares of Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (REGN) – Get Report were rising in premarket trading Thursday after President Trump repeatedly touted “Regeneron” in a video message, apparently confusing the manufacturer of an experimental drug he received while hospitalized with the medication itself.
“I wasn’t feeling that hot,” Trump said in the video, recorded outside the Oval Office at the White House. “But they gave me Regeneron and it was like, unbelievable. I felt good immediately,” Trump said. The president didn’t wear a mask while recording the video.
Trump actually received a monoclonal antibody cocktail made by Regeneron. The medication, which has yet to be approved for use in the U.S., was given under tightly controlled compassionate use rules for experimental medications.
Regeneron said it has applied with the Food and Drug Administration for emergency use authorization for its antibody treatment.
“Under our agreement with the U.S. government for the initial doses of REGN-COV2, if an EUA is granted the government has committed to making these doses available to the American people at no cost and would be responsible for their distribution,” the company said in a statement late Wednesday. “At this time, there are doses available for approximately 50,000 patients, and we expect to have doses available for 300,000 patients in total within the next few months.”
The stock gained 4.48% to $618.22 in premarket trading.
4. — JPMorgan Chase Commits $30 Billion to Advance Racial Equality
JPMorgan Chase (JPM) – Get Report has committed $30 billion over the next five years to advance racial equality.
“Systemic racism is a tragic part of America’s history,” said JPMorgan Chase Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon in a press release. “We can do more and do better to break down systems that have propagated racism and widespread economic inequality, especially for Black and Latinx people. It’s long past time that society addresses racial inequities in a more tangible, meaningful way.”
JPMorgan Chase said it plans to spend $8 billion, up from $4.2 billion a year earlier, to originate 40,000 mortgages for Black and Latinx households over the next five years. The $8 billion is on top of its normal lending, a spokeswoman told Bloomberg.
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5. — Citigroup to Pay $400 Million Fine for Lax Risk Management
Citigroup (C) – Get Report was fined $400 million by federal authorities for problems with its risk management controls.
The stock was down 0.13% to $44.78 in premarket trading Thursday.
Citigroup also was ordered by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency to seek its approval before making any “significant new acquisitions.”
The OCC also said it reserved the power to make changes at the bank’s senior management if Citigroup doesn’t institute effective risk management and internal controls quickly enough.
The Federal Reserve, meanwhile, issued a cease-and-desist order that order Citigroup to “correct practices previously identified by the Board in the areas of compliance risk management, data quality management, and internal controls.”