FCN: Dow futures rally as investors move past shutdown to focus on earnings … MARKETWATCH January 23, 2018 at 01:10PM


Netflix set to soar after better-than-expected results


U.S. stock futures swung between gains and losses on Thursday, with investors focusing on quarterly results from a number of Dow components a day after the a partial shutdown of the government was temporarily ended

What are the main benchmarks doing?

The Dow Jones Industrial Average futures YMH8, +0.00% was trading flat at 26,206, up 12 points, but had been up by as many as 100 points, while S&P 500 futuresESH8, -0.04% were flat at 2,834. Nasdaq-100 futures NQH8, +0.07% added 6.25 points, or 0.1%, at 6,936.50.

All three major stock market indexes closed at record levels on Monday amid signs that U.S. politicians were nearing an agreement on a temporary budget deal. The S&P 500 SPX, +0.81% rose 0.8% to 2,832.97, the Nasdaq Composite IndexCOMP, +0.98% rallied 1% to 7,408.03 and the Dow Jones Industrial AverageDJIA, +0.55% gained 0.6% to 26,214.60.

Read: Stock market headed for ‘nasty surprise’ if this signal proves correct

What’s driving markets?

After U.S. markets closed on Monday, Congress passed a three-week funding measure that brought a halt to the three-day shutdown, with the bill then signed by President Donald Trump. The agreement keeps the government running up to Feb. 8, though underlying disagreements between the Republicans and the Democrats on immigration and other topics remain.

With that crisis averted for now, there is little to stop stocks from pushing out yet another set of records. Investors who have been buying stocks on the view that the economy is on an upswing were likely cheered by Monday’s upbeat global outlook from the International Monetary Fund.

There are no economic data due Tuesday.

Investors were likely to watch for comments from financial and business leaders who are gathering in Davos, Switzerland for the World Economic Forum, which kicked off Tuesday. With a shutdown averted, President Trump is expected to attend and is scheduled to speak on Friday.

What are strategists saying?

“With the government shutdown in the rearview mirror, investors could shift their focus back to the slew of corporate earnings due for release as earning seasons continues at full throttle,” said Jasper Lawler, head of research at London Capital Group, in a note.

“The Teflon market continues in earnest and nothing sticks and very little is of concern, as has been the case for some time with the same macro factors keeping the positive trend in play,” wrote Chris Weston, chief market strategist at IG, in a note to clients.

“Improving corporate earnings has also been a theme, while developed market central banks are mostly behind the curve and again this is supportive of ever easier financial conditions and supportive of the grind higher in U.S. stocks.” he added.

Which stocks are in focus?

Netflix Inc. NFLX, +3.23%  was up 9% in premarket trading. Shares of the streaming video group soared nearly 10% late Monday, putting the company on track to hit a $100 billion market-capitalization valuation, after it beat forecasts for earnings and new net subscribers.

Travelers Cos. TRV, +1.09%  rose 3% in premarket after the insurer’s revenue and profit beat forecasts.

Procter & Gamble PG, +0.90%  fell 1% in premarket after earnings and sales beat forecasts, but income was lower than the same period a year ago.

Verizon Communications VZ, +2.99%  shares rose over 1% ahead of the open after a sales beat and tax-reform boost helped offset a miss on profit.

Johnson & Johnson JNJ, +0.53%  earnings are still ahead.

First Solar Inc. NFLX, +3.23%  rose 3.4% after an 8% climb in Monday’s after-hours session after the U.S. government approved tariffs on solar-panel imports.Shares of Whirlpool Corp. WHR, -0.53%  jumped 4% as tariffs were also approved for imported washing machines for home use.

What are other assets doing?

The ICE U.S. Dollar Index DXY, +0.03% was modestly higher, building on gains after the government shutdown ended. Monday’s U.S. stock gains fueled a rise for European stocks SXXP, +0.12% with the German DAX DAX, +0.67%  jumping to a record high, and Asian markets, which saw 1%-plus gains across several markets. Gold prices GCG8, +0.32% rose modestly, while oil futures US:CLG8 were higher.

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