What's moving markets today: April 26, 2019
The trading week is over. Records were broken -- twice! Here's what's next for investors.
- Economic data will be the name of the game, with consumer confidence and the jobs report on deck.
- The Federal Reserve is holding its two-day meeting and will deliver its interest rate decision and policy update on Wednesday.
- European data will include economic sentiment on Monday and GDP on Tuesday, while two different China manufacturing numbers are also due.
- Google, Apple, GE, Yum Brands, Under Armour and Dunkin' report first quarter earnings among others.
- Japan’s markets are closed until May 6 for Golden Week. The holiday goes for six days in a row this year for the first time ever, and that could lead to volatility in Asian markets.
Stocks closed higher on Friday, as both the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite rallied to record closing highs.
Both the S&P and the Nasdaq had previously set record closing highs on Tuesday.
Ford (F) was the strongest performer in the S&P, rising nearly 11% after posting earnings report late Thursday. The automaker also said that the Department of Justice is opening a criminal investigation into the company's emissions testing practices.
US oil futures closed 2.9% lower on Friday, shaken after President Donald Trump's earlier comment that he called the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) to bring down its price.
West Texas Intermediate settled at $63.30 a barrel for June futures and $63.38 for July.
The price of Brent Crude, the international measure, dropped 3% on Friday, settling at $71.15 per barrel for June and $71.63 for July. With the end of the month approaching, futures contracts are about to roll into the next month.
About half-way through Friday's trading session, stocks remain mixed.
For the week, the Dow is on track for a 0.4% loss, while the S&P has so far climbed 0.7% after setting a new all-time closing high on Tuesday. The Nasdaq is looking at a 1.5% gain this week, also after hitting a new record closing high.
S&P component Ford (F) was also on the rise, climbing 9% after reporting first quarter results. Additonally, the company disclosed that the Department of Justice is running a criminal investigation into its emissions testing protocols after the company had self-reported concerns in February.
Uber's latest S-1 filing reveals the company will give some drivers as much as $40,000 in a one-time cash "appreciation award."
The company's initial paperwork showed that it had planned to give drivers payments based on how many trips they've made since joining Uber. But Uber added two new payment tiers in the new filing.
Payments will be based on how many trips drivers have made since they started driving for Uber:
- $100 for 2,500 trips
- $500 for 5,000 trips
- $1,000 for 10,000 trips
- $10,000 for 20,000 trips
- $20,000 for 30,000 trips
- $40,000 for 40,000 trips
Additionally, to be eligible for the bonuses drivers must have completed at least one trip this year and be in good standing with the company.
Drivers eligible for the appreciation awards will also have the option to buy shares ahead of the IPO.
Lyft also rewarded some top drivers with cash bonuses of $1,000 or $10,000, depending on certain trip thresholds. Drivers had the option to use the money to buy shares in that company as well.
Market watchers are digesting the whopping 3.2% first quarter US GDP report from this morning.
The headline number was strong and beat consensus estimates, but it is also just the first reading and will likely get revised. Strong economic growth could be cause for concern for stock investors worried that inflation will rise too.
That in turn could make the Federal Reserve rethink its recent action to take the foot off the gas for further interest rate hikes. And rising interest rates typically weigh on stocks.
But the core PCE number in the GDP report, which measures personal consumption expenses, was weaker than expected at 1.3%, keeping immediate inflation worries at bay.
After all, the Fed's mandate is to keep inflation around 2%, and that's apparently a long way away.
All in all, it was "a good report for equity investors," said Minh Trang, senior trader at Silicon Valley Bank.
Nevertheless, stocks seem unimpressed amid further earnings reports. The Dow and the S&P 500 are slightly stronger, while the Nasdaq is hovering in negative territory. Next week's Fed meeting might give us clues for what's next.
Amazon CFO Brian Olsavsky didn't specify when faster shipping would be standard for all Prime customers, but he said the company expects to "make steady progress quickly and through the year."