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5 things to know prior the stock market opens Thursday, July 29

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Here are the top news, trends and analysis that investors need to start their trading day:

1. Dow futures rise following Fed keeps interest rates near zero

A trader works behind plexiglass on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, New York, US, July 28, 2021.

Andrew Kelly | Reuters

Dow futures rose more than 100 points Thursday, one day following averaging 30 shares, the S&P 500 fell slightly and the Nasdaq rose modestly. All three indexes ended less than 1% from their record close on Monday following Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said in his post-meeting press conference that a major economic improvement was needed for the central bank to start rolling back its simple fiscal policies. On the financial side, the Senate voted to advance the bipartisan infrastructure plan Wednesday night, a crucial step toward Democrats’ passage of their comprehensive economic agenda.

  • In stocks to watch: Dow Merck fell in the primary market following the drugmaker on Thursday matched estimates with quarterly earnings and beat expectations on revenue. Amazon announces earnings following Thursday.
  • Trevor Melton, founder of Nikola, has been charged with three counts of fraud by the US Attorney’s Office in Manhattan in connection with their investigation into the startup of the embattled electric vehicle. Shares of Nikola, which have lost more than half their value in the former 12 months, fell 6% in pre-market trading on Thursday.

2. Recent GDP, initial jobless claims weaker than expected

In the latest snapshot of the economic recovery from the Covid pandemic, the Commerce Department said Thursday morning that its first look at second-quarter gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 6.5%, a big error compared to its 8.4% growth estimates.

The Labor Department also reported prior the opening bell on Wall Street that initial jobless claims came in at 400,000 final week, slightly worse than expectations. The previous week’s level was revised to 424,000. Initial claims for the week ending July 10 of 368,000 matched a Covid-era low final month.

3. Robinhood will make its public debut following IPO pricing

Vlad Tenev, CEO and co-founder of Robinhood, at his office on July 15, 2021 in Menlo Park, California.

Kimberly White | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images

Robinhood, whose stock trading app has skyrocketed in popularity among retail investors, is expected to make its debut on the Nasdaq on Thursday. The initial public offering on Wednesday night was priced as low as $38 each, raising about $2 billion and valuing the company at about $32 billion. However, the company is not without controversy.

  • Earlier this year, during the initial stock fury, Robinhood angered some investors and lawmakers when it restricted trading in some popular stocks following a 10-fold increase in clearinghouse filing requirements.
  • The company revealed this week that it had received inquiries from US regulators about whether its employees had traded shares of GameStop and AMC Entertainment prior placing the trading restrictions at the end of January.
  • In June, Robinhood agreed to pay nearly $70 million to settle an investigation by a Wall Street regulator.

4. Facebook warns of growth, sets vaccine mandate

A giant digital sign is seen on the campus of Facebook’s corporate headquarters in Menlo Park, California, October 23, 2019.

Josh Adelson | AFP | Getty Images

Facebook shares fell about 3.5% in the Thursday market, the morning following the social network announced that revenue growth would slow during the second half of the year. Facebook cited a change to Apple’s privacy policies, which it said would harm the social network’s aptitude to target ads. In the second quarter, Facebook reported earnings of $3.61 per share and revenue of $29.08 billion. Both topped the ratings. Daily Active Users and Monthly Active Users each match expectations.

Facebook announced Wednesday that it will require workers returning to its US offices to be vaccinated. “How we implement this policy will depend on local conditions and regulations,” People’s Vice President Laurie Guler said in a statement. Guler said Facebook will create processes for those who cannot be vaccinated for medical or other reasons, adding that the company will persevere to evaluate its approach outside the United States.

5. Disney, Apple bring back Covid mask requirements again

Guests wear masks. as it is required. To attend the official reopening day of the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, on Saturday, July 11, 2020.

Joe Burbank | Orlando Sentinel | Getty Images

Disney has revised its mask policy at its US theme parks in the wake of unused guidelines from health and government officials. Starting Friday, the company will require all guests, regardless of vaccination status, to wear masks indoors at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida and Disneyland Resort in California. Children under the age of two are exempt from this authorization.

People walk former an Apple retail store on July 13, 2021 in New York City.

Angela Weiss | AFP | Getty Images

Apple will require both immunized and non-vaccinated customers as well as employees to wear masks at several US retail stores start Thursday, a person familiar with the matter told CNBC reporter Josh Lipton. Earlier this week, Apple CEO Tim Cook told CNBC that the company has delayed its return to its office plans for corporate employees from September to October, and that it could be postponed again.

Reuters and CNBC Peter Shakir Contribute to this report. Follow all market movements like a pro CNBC Pro. Get the latest news on the epidemic with CNBC’s coronavirus coverage.


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