Here are five things you must know for Thursday, Dec. 10:
1. — Stock Futures Point Higher
Stock futures were higher Thursday following the previous session’s sharp slide in technology shares and as investors weighed bogged down stimulus talks.
Contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 56 points, S&P 500 futures were up 4 points and Nasdaq futures slipped 7 points.
Stocks declined Wednesday as Wall Street weighed dimming prospects for a coronavirus relief package and as tech giants took a beating after Facebook (FB) – Get Report was sued by the Federal Trade Commission and a coalition of U.S. states for what they charged was anticompetitive behavior.
The Dow ended down 105 points, or 0.35%, to 30,069, the S&P 500 fell 0.79% and the tech-heavy Nasdaq lost 1.94%.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi remain divided over competing stimulus packages. McConnell backs a $916 billion proposal floated by the White House, while Pelosi prefers a $908 billion plan being worked on by a bipartisan group of lawmakers.
Congress faces a deadline of Dec. 18 to get a deal done as that is the date a year-end spending must be completed that would contain any relief aid.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told reporters “it is long past time when adults should have made an agreement” on a Covid-19 relief package.
That’s especially true now as the U.S. has reached another grim milestone in its battle against Covid-19. Just one week after the country broke a daily record for coronavirus deaths, it did so again on Wednesday, with officials across the country reporting at least 3,011 new fatalities, according to The New York Times.
Asian shares finished mostly lower on Thursday, while European stocks edged higher.
For more on Asian markets read:
S&P Dow Jones Indices to Remove 21 Chinese Companies From Its Global Equity, Bond Benchmarks After U.S. Blacklisting
2. — Facebook Slips as FTC Says Social Media Giant Must Be Broken Up
Facebook declined in premarket trading after the Federal Trade Commission and a coalition of states filed an antitrust lawsuit against the tech giant, charging the company engaged in anticompetitive behavior to maintain a monopoly position in personal social networking.
The stock fell 1.31% to $274.28 on Thursday.
The FTC’s case was brought in coordination with attorneys general from 46 states, the District of Columbia and Guam.
In the suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, the FTC alleged that Facebook undertook a years-long effort to maintain a monopoly through anticompetitive acquisitions and actions that target potential and nascent rivals.
The commission has demanded that Facebook unwind the acquisitions of photo-focused network Instagram and messaging app WhatsApp. Facebook purchased Instagram for $715 million in 2012, and WhatsApp for $22 billion in 2014.
The deals were meant to “squelch” competitive threats, the FTC wrote in its complaint.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, in a post to employees, wrote the company’s acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp “have dramatically improved those services and helped them reach many more people.
“We compete hard and we compete fairly. I’m proud of that,” Zuckerberg added.
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3. — Airbnb IPO Is Priced at $68 a Share, Above Range
The initial public offering for Airbnb, the home rental platform, was priced at $68 a share, well above an already raised target range of $56 to $60 a share.
The stock is expected to begin trading Thursday on the Nasdaq under symbol “ (ABNB) – Get Report.”
Airbnb raised about $3.5 billion in the IPO. The pricing valued Airbnb at around $47 billion.
The pricing of the shares followed the trading debut of DoorDash (DASH) – Get Report, which closed at $189.51 on Wednesday, more than 85% above its IPO price of $102 a share.
The listings for Airbnb and DoorDash add to what was already a record year for IPOs, with more than $163 billion raised on U.S. exchanges, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Airbnb has seen its business hammered by the coronavirus pandemic, as have all travel-related companies. However, with the onset of vaccinations against the coronavirus, hopes have risen for an improved travel market in 2021. Airbnb connects travelers with people renting out their personal homes.
4. — Pfizer’s Vaccine Reaches Final Review
Pfizer (PFE) – Get Report was rising in premarket trading Thursday ahead of a Food and Drug Administration advisory meeting that could authorize the first coronavirus vaccine in the U.S.
Pfizer was up 0.38% to $42.01. American depositary receipts of its development partner, Germany’s BioNTech (BNTX) – Get Report, rose 1.29% to $124.40.
The FDA’s 17-member Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee will meet Thursday to discuss the pair’s Covid-19 vaccine and then vote on whether the FDA should authorize the shot. The FDA isn’t required to follow the committee’s recommendations but often does. FDA officials reportedly told The Wall Street Journal they expect to make a decision within four days of the meeting.
The companies have requested an “emergency use authorization,” which is just shy of a full approval. The vaccine would be the first Covid-19 vaccine in the U.S.
If the FDA approves the Pfizer vaccine, distribution in the U.S. could begin within 24 hours, according to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.
5. — Thursday’s Calendar: Costco Earnings, CPI, Jobless Claims
Earnings reports are expected Thursday from Costco (COST) – Get Report, Oracle (ORCL) – Get Report, Broadcom (AVGO) – Get Report, Lululemon (LULU) – Get Report, Adobe (ADBE) – Get Report, Ciena (CIEN) – Get Report and Dave & Buster’s Entertainment (PLAY) – Get Report.
Can Costco Muster Up a Post-Earnings Rally?
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The economic calendar Wednesday includes the Consumer Price Index for November at 8:30 a.m. ET and weekly Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m.