Here are five things you must know for Wednesday, Nov. 18:
1. — Stock Futures Edge Cautiously Higher
Stock futures traded cautiously higher Wednesday as Wall Street has been encouraged by progress toward development of a coronavirus vaccine but remained keenly aware that a shot remains months away while infection numbers continue to rise.
Contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 88 points, S&P 500 futures gained 8 points and Nasdaq futures were up 37 points.
Stocks ended lower Tuesday as optimism about a coronavirus vaccine faded somewhat with the reality that the pandemic continues to escalate in the U.S. and across the globe. A decline in U.S. retail sales also served as “a warning shot that Covid-19 is still with us, and its effects will not miraculously disappear overnight,” said Jeffrey Halley of Oanda.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said that while positive results from coronavirus vaccine trials were “certainly good news, particularly in the medium term, in the near term there are significant challenges and uncertainties. Even in the best case, widespread vaccination is months into the future.”
He added that the U.S. economy has a “long way to go” before it returns to pre-pandemic levels.
Meanwhile, top Democrats Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell asking they meet to restart stalled negotiations on another coronavirus relief package. The two sides haven’t discussed the relief bill since the Nov. 3 presidential election.
Asian stocks ended Wednesday’s session mixed while European shares traded mostly higher.
For more on Asian markets read:
2. — Nvidia, Lowe’s and Target Report Earnings
Earnings reports are expected Wednesday from Nvidia (NVDA) – Get Report, Lowe’s (LOW) – Get Report, Target (TGT) – Get Report, TJX Cos. (TJX) – Get Report, Sonos (SONO) – Get Report and L Brands (LB) – Get Report.
The economic calendar in the U.S. Wednesday includes MBA Mortgage Applications for the week ended Nov. 13 at 7 a.m. ET, Housing Starts and Permits for October at 8:30 a.m. and Oil Inventories for the week ended Nov. 13 at 10:30 a.m.
3. — Boeing 737 MAX Flight Ban to Be Lifted
The 737 MAX, once Boeing’s best-selling jet, has been grounded since March 2019 following two crashes that killed 346 people. The 20-month grounding was the longest in commercial aviation history.
The FAA will detail software upgrades and training changes the plane maker must make in order for it to resume commercial flights, Reuters reported.
The FAA also said it would no longer allow Boeing to sign off on the airworthiness of about 450 already-built 737 MAXs. The agency, therefore, plans in-person, individual inspections that could take a year or more to complete, prolonging the jets’ delivery, Reuters noted.
American Airlines (AAL) – Get Report has said it plans to relaunch 737 MAX flights at the end of December. Southwest Airlines (LUV) – Get Report said it would fly the aircraft beginning in the second quarter of 2021.
Boeing shares were up 4.02% to $218.50 in premarket trading Wednesday.
4. — Morgan Stanley Is Bullish on Tesla
Tesla (TSLA) – Get Report was rising more than 3% in premarket trading, extending Tuesday’s sharp gains, after Morgan Stanley gave shares of the electric vehicle maker an overweight rating for the first time in more than three years.
Morgan Stanley predicted that Tesla was on the verge of a “profound model shift” from selling cars to generating high-margin software and services revenue, according to a report from Bloomberg.
“To only value Tesla on car sales alone ignores the multiple businesses embedded within the company,” analyst Adam Jonas wrote in a note.
He upgraded the shares from equal-weight and boosted his price target by 50% to $540 a share.
Tesla rose 3.02% to $454.96 a share in premarket trading Wednesday. The stock gained 8.21% on Tuesday after the electric vehicle maker was admitted to the S&P 500.
5. — NIO Posts Jump in Vehicle Sales
Vehicle sales jumped 146% in the September quarter from a year earlier to 4.27 billion yuan ($650 million). Revenue in the quarter was $667 million, higher than analysts’ estimates, and up from $262.9 million a year earlier.
Nio said it delivered 12,206 vehicles in the latest quarter, a 150% increase from the same period a year earlier, and from 10,331 in the second quarter.
“We expect to deliver 16,500 to 17,000 vehicles in the coming fourth quarter,” said William Bin Li, NIO’s founder, chairman and CEO, in a statement.
American depositary receipts of NIO rose 3.69% to $48.32.