May 29, 2024
Stock Market

US futures shrug off sell-off as earnings flood awaits

US stocks were eyeing a recovery on Monday from their worst week of the year, with the S&P 500 (^GSPC) turning upbeat as investors braced for a flood of corporate earnings.

S&P 500 (^GSPC) futures rose 0.5%, having closed below 5,000 on Friday for the first time since February amid six straight days of losses. Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) futures also added 0.5%, while contracts on the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 (^NDX) put on 0.6%.

After its recent battering, the market rally has sunk to its most fragile point in months, and this week will be critical to determining whether the malaise continues.

Tech stocks are looking to recover after lackluster earnings from Netflix (NFLX) dragged on a broader market already grappling with geopolitical tensions. Fading chances of an interest rate cut have fueled skepticism that megacaps can continue to shoulder the task of driving gains.

Hopes are now resting on Big Tech earnings later in the week to reassure and reignite the market. On deck are quarterly reports from Meta (META), Microsoft (MSFT) and Alphabet (GOOG). On Monday, Verizon (VZ) is the highlight as the market gets ready for a deluge of reports, with 178 from S&P 500 companies alone due in coming days.

But the focus Monday is on Tesla (TSLA) on the eve of its results, as the EV maker said it has cut prices in the US, China, and several other countries. The Elon Musk-led company has already unsettled some investors with its robotaxi push and decision to have shareholders vote again on Musk’s rejected pay package. Shares fell more than 3% in pre-market trading.

Meanwhile, debate over the Federal Reserve’s stance on rate cuts continued to rumble, after chair Jerome Powell and fellow policymakers turned more hawkish last week in the face of persistent inflation. Given that, minds are already turning toward Friday’s release of the PCE index — the Fed’s preferred inflation gauge — as critical to assessing whether rates will stay higher for longer.

Live1 update

  • Reminder on Nvidia after Friday’s beating

    Tough session for Nvidia (NVDA) on Friday — shares lost 10%!

    The stock is now down 25% from its March 25 highs.

    Who knows whether this is the bottom, as the entire AI trade is under pressure amid more cautious sentiment.

    But what I do know is that Nvidia is fundamentally strong and likely to be defended on the Street soon due to the sell-off.

    Good point here from Evercore ISI’s Mark Lapacis, in a new note that underscores the point:

    “We think investors underestimate 1) the importance of the chip+hardware+software ecosystem that Nvidia has created, 2) that computing eras last 15-20 years and are typically dominated by a single vertically integrated ecosystem company, whose returns are measured in 100-to-1000 bagger range.”

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