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 NEWS: MARKETWATCH MARKETPULSE
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   NEWS: MARKETWATCH MARKETPULSE
MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Online marketplace Poshmark confidentially files for IPO
Poshmark Inc. said late Friday it confidentially submitted to securities regulators a draft registration statement for its initial public offering. The number of shares to be offered and the price range are yet to be determined, the Redwood City, Calif., company said in a press release. The IPO is expected to start after the Securities and Exchange Commission completes its review process, subject to market conditions. Poshmark is an online marketplace for new and used clothing and other fashion items.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Trump has picked Amy Coney Barrett as Supreme Court nominee: report
President Donald Trump has selected Amy Coney Barrett to succeed the late liberal Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, said a New York Times report on Friday citing unnamed sources close to the process. But the report also said aides have cautioned that Trump sometimes upends his own plans. CNN in a separate report said Trump intends to choose Barrett. The president is slated to announce his pick at 5 p.m. Eastern Time Saturday.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Dow industrials, S&P 500 rally mightily on Friday but fail to avoid longest weekly losing streak in over a year
U.S. stocks finished a weekly trading stretch, marked by wild swings, on a higher note, shrugging off uncertainty about additional coronavirus stimulus from Washington, rising cases of coronavirus and a stall-out in some components of economic data. Investors still turned to the perceived safety of technology stocks, helping the Nasdaq Composite avoid a fourth consecutive weekly slide, but the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average booked their fourth weekly drop, matching their longest such losing skid since Aug. 23, 2019, FactSet data show. The Dow finished the session up by about 360 points, or 1.3%, at about 27,174, while the S&P 500 closed 1.6% higher at around 3,298, on a preliminary basis. For the week, the Dow booked a 1.8% decline while the S&P 500 lost 0.6% over the five-session stretch. The Nasdaq Composite, however, closed up 2.3% on the session to reach 10,913, on a preliminary basis. That helped the tech-laden benchmark record a 1.1% weekly gain erasing a fall of that magnitude, from which it started Friday trade.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Friday's stock market rally in final hour of trade helping Nasdaq erase over 1% weekly skid
U.S. stocks on Friday were ending a choppy week on a high note, which was helping the technology-laden Nasdaq Composite Index wipe out a more than 1% weekly drop in the final hour of trading. The Nasdaq Composite Index on Friday afternoon was up 2.4% on the day, which was putting it in position to notch a weekly gain of about 1.2%, an accomplishment for the benchmark which had begun the session in a 1.1% hole. The moves on the day highlight a volatile period for stocks as investors fret about the lack of further stimulus from Washington to help out-of-work Americans during the COVID-19 crisis, viewed as a key pillar to helping equities take another leg higher from the financial and public health crisis that reached a peak for the stock market in March. Rising cases of coronavirus and a looming 2020 presidential election also contributed to the turbulence. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, meanwhile, was up more than 400 points on Friday at 27,227, while the S&P 500 index was up 1.8% at 3,304. Although the Nasdaq looked likely to avoid a fourth straight weekly decline, the S&P 500 was still on track for a weekly declined of 0.5% and the Dow was set for a 1.6% weekly skid, despite the late-session advance.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

SPAC Yellowstone Acquisition files to go public, to raise $200 million
Blank check company Yellowstone Acquisition Co. has filed to go public to raise $200 million. The Nebraska-based special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) said it is offering 20 million units at $10 per unit. Each unit will consist of one share of Class A common stock, and one-half of one warrant; a whole warrant entitles the holder to buy one Class A share for $11.50 each. The Class A shares are expected to list on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "YSU." Yellowstone's sponsor is a subsidiary of Boston Omaha Corp. . Wells Fargo Securities is the sole bookrunner. SPACs raise money through an IPO, then place it in a trust while the sponsor searches for a business or businesses to acquire, usually within a two-year period. The companies then complete what is in effect a reverse merger, as the combined company takes on the name of the acquiree. Yellowstone is looking to go public during a big year for SPACs, and a good year for IPOs, with the Renaissance IPO ETF rallying 65.2% year to date while the S&P 500 is gaining 2.3%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Oil futures end lower for the week
Oil futures were slightly lower on Friday, posting a loss for the week as some signs of tighter supplies, including a second weekly decline in U.S. crude inventories, failed to offset pressure from expectations of weaker energy demand on the back of the rise in COVID-19 cases. "The oil market is sensitive to the perceived health of the world economy and there were already signs that the rebound was cooling before the recent jump in new cases of coronavirus in Europe," said David Madden, market analyst at CMC Markets UK. Meanwhile, data from Baker Hughes Friday showed that the number of active U.S. oil-drilling rigs climbed by 4 this week to 183, marking the first increase in three weeks. November West Texas Intermediate crude fell 6 cents, or nearly 0.2%, to settle at $40.25 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. For the week, prices for the most-active contract lost 2.6%, according to Dow Jones Market Data.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Gold futures lose nearly 5% for the week
Gold futures declined Friday to post a loss of nearly 5% for the week-the largest weekly percentage loss since mid-March. Analysts attributed losses for the precious metal to strength in the U.S. dollar this week. The longer-term outlook remains positive for gold, however, "as the global economic recovery will warrant more stimulus as the Northern Hemisphere battles the winter wave of the virus," said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda. "Gold will likely attract buyers from here on out as investors start scaling back their bullish bets." December gold fell $10.60, or 0.6%, to settle at $1,866.30 an ounce. For the week, prices based on the most-active contract lost 4.9%, according to FactSet data.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Neiman Marcus emerges from bankruptcy
Luxury retailer Neiman Marcus Holdings Co. Inc. said Friday that it has emerged from bankruptcy, which "full support" of its creditors and new equity shareholder. The new owners include PIMCO, Davison Kempner Capital Management and Sixth Street. They are funding a $750 million exit financing package. "With the successful implementation of our restructuring, Neiman Marcus and Bergdorf Goodman will continue to be the preeminent luxury shopping destinations for years to come," said Neiman Chief Executive Geoffroy van Raemdonck. "While the unprecedented business disruption caused by COVID-19 has presented many challenges, it has also given us the opportunity to reimagine our platform and improve our business." Neiman had filed for bankruptcy in May, and was the first department store chain to succumb to the COVID-19 pandemic. Among others that went bankrupt are J.C. Penney and Lord & Taylor.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Cruise stocks surge, lead the S&P 500's gainers after Barclays turns bullish
Cruise operator stocks surged Friday, to pace the S&P 500's gainers, after Barclays analysts turned bullish on the group, saying the industry has reached a post-COVID-19 inflection point. Shares of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. shot up 11.5% to be the top S&P 500 gainer, Carnival Corp. was second with an 8.9% rally and Royal Caribbean Group's stock was third with 7.4% gain. Barclays analysts led by Felicia Hendrix raised the the ratings of all three stocks to overweight from equal weight. Hendrix said the industry could get a nice boost within the next few days when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) addresses its order to suspend cruises through Sept. 30. Even if the CDC extends the order, Hendrix said she thinks the worst is behind the sector. "While we see a high likelihood that the CDC will extend the date again (likely into 4Q20), we expect comments from the agency to be positive and potentially signal a near-term return to cruise, which could be a catalyst for the shares," Hendrix wrote in a note to clients. Year to date, shares of Norwegian have plunged 72.1%, Carnival have tumbled 70.6% and Royal have dropped 51.8%, while the S&P 500 has gained 1.3%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Timber, materials ETFs higher on paper demand
Paper and packaging stocks jumped Friday, buoying exchange-traded funds that focus on timber and materials. WestRock Company gained nearly 7% midday, making it one of the biggest movers in the S&P 500 , with International Paper Company , up 5%, and Packaging Corporation of America , up 4.1%, not far behind. The Invesco MSCI Global Timber ETF gained more than 1% midday, while the iShares Global Timber & Forestry ETF was up 0.5%. The broad sector ETF that covers the industry, the SPDR Select Materials fund is the best performer of the 11 sector SPDRs over the past month, as investors have rotated away from pricey tech and consumer names toward stocks that are better value, and which stand to benefit from the new business cycle.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Graybug Vision's stock open up 19%, then pares some gains
Graybug Vision Inc.'s stock started its public life with a rally, as it opened 18.8% above its initial public offering price. The first trade was at $19.00 at 12:15 p.m. Eastern for 293,572 shares, above the upsized IPO price of $16 a share. At the IPO price, the California-based biopharmaceutical company raised $90 million and was valued at $306.5 million. The stock has pared some gains since it opened, to be trading 7.5% above its IPO price. The company went public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has rallied 63.0% year to date, while the S&P 500 has edged up 1.1%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

PMV Pharmaceutical's stock nearly doubles in its debut
PMV Pharmaceuticals Inc.'s stock debuted with a bang Friday, as the the stock opened at nearly double the initial public offering price. The first trade was at $35.00 at 12:09 p.m. Eastern for 346,817 shares, or 94.4% above the IPO price of $18 a share. The New Jersey-based oncology company raised $211.8 million in the IPO, and was valued at $774 million at the IPO price. The stock has mostly held its gains since the open, to be trading 93.6% above its IPO price The company went public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has rallied 23.3% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 5.8%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

J&J: most Phase 1/2a participants in COVID-19 vaccine developed neutralizing antibodies
Shares of Johnson & Johnson were up 0.1% in trading on Friday after data from the Phase 1/2a clinical trial for its COVID-19 vaccine candidate was published as a preprint. A preprint is not a peer-reviewed study, long considered the gold standard in medical research; however, some drugmakers developing vaccines and treatments are publishing clinical-trial findings on preprint servers during the coronavirus pandemic. The study evaluated a one-dose and two-dose regimen in two cohorts of participants: healthy adults between the ages of 18 and 55 years old and those between the ages of 65 and 75 years old. Interim results reported by J&J in the preprint indicate that 99% of the adult participants who received the vaccine developed neutralizing antibody titers, and all of the 65-and-older participants did, as well. Both groups had binding and neutralizing antibody levels that were in "the same range" as people who have recovered from COVID-19 infections. "Based on similar immunogenicity of both dose levels, we have selected the lower dose for further clinical evaluation," the researchers said. Earlier this week J&J had announced that it had initiated a Phase 3 trial in the U.S. utilizing a single dose. J&J's stock is 0.7% so far this year, while the S&P 500 is up 0.5%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Amesite's stock opens below IPO price, than rallies above it
Amesite Inc.'s stock stumbled out of the gate, as it opened 1% below its initial public offering price, but then righted itself to trade higher. The first trade was at $4.95 at 11:39 a.m. Eastern for 162,143 shares, below the IPO price of $5. The stock was last trading 10% above its IPO price. The company's IPO priced at the midpoint of the expected range of $4.50 to $5.50. The company sold 3 million shares to raise $15 million. With 20.4 million shares outstanding after the IPO, the artificial-intelligence driven platform and course designer was valued at $102.1 million. Laidlaw & Co. was the sole book-running manager. The company went public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has rallied 23.5% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 5.6%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Honeywell raises dividend by 3.3%, starting with its fourth-quarter payout
Honeywell International Inc. said Friday it was raising its annual dividend by 3.3%, to $3.72 a share from $3.60. The new dividend rate will be effective in the fourth quarter, when it a quarterly dividend of 93 cents will be payable on Dec. 4 to shareholders of record on Dec. 13. Based on the software industrial company's current stock price -- it is up 0.4% at $159.42 in midday trading -- the new annual dividend rate implies a dividend yield of 2.33%, which compares with the implied yield for the S&P 500 of 1.73%. "Honeywell remains focused on providing value to our shareowners despite the current challenging economic environment, and today we announced an increase to our dividend for the 11th consecutive year," said Chief Executive Darius Adamczyk. The stock has rallied 11.9% over the past three months, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 4.6%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Stocks open mostly lower on rising case counts, stimulus stalemate
U.S. stocks opened mostly lower Friday morning as investors hunted for a positive catalyst amid an array of headwinds. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost about 135 points or 0.5% to open near 26,680, while the S&P 500 slipped 10 points, 0.3%, opening near 3,237. The Nasdaq Composite was about 10 points higher, near 10,680, a gain of 0.1%. Stock benchmarks are on track to mark a fourth straight week of losses as concerns grow over the U.S. election, the lack of additional stimulus to support the economy, and rising COVID-19 case counts around the globe. Orders for durable goods rose 0.4% in August, the Commerce Department said Friday, signaling slowing momentum in the economy. Shares of NVIDIA Corporation rose in early trade after a price-target increase. The chipmaker is the S&P 500 component that's gained the most in the year to date - 110%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Hawaiian Airlines to offer travelers drive-through COVID-19 testing in LA, San Francisco
Hawaiian Airlines parent Hawaiian Holdings Inc. said Friday that it will offer travelers from some U.S. mainland cities drive-through COVID-19 tests, so those how test negative can be exempt from Hawaii's 14-day quarantine requirement. The air carrier said the tests will be available near the international airports in Los Angeles and San Francisco. For results within 36 hours, the tests will cost $90 and will cost $150 for "day-of-travel" express service. "As Hawai'i's leading airline, it is critical to ensure that access to testing does not impede travel to Hawai'i, for visitors or our kama' ina (residents)," said Avi Mannis, senior vice president of marketing at Hawaiian. The stock, which rose 3.8% in premarket trading, has tumbled 57.7% year to date through Thursday, while the U.S. Global Jets ETF has shed 47.4% and the S&P 500 has edged up 0.5%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Spirit AeroSystems terminates Asco acquisition deal, more than 2 years after it was announced
Spirit AeroSystems Holdings Inc. disclosed Friday that ihas reached an agreement to terminate the deal to buy Asco Industries N.V. parent, S.R.I.F. NV. The termination comes after Spirit said earlier this week that the deal may be terminated because conditions of the deal had not been satisfied. The deal was first announced in May 2018 for $650 million, then the purchase price was lowered to $420 million in October 2019. Spirit's stock, which rose 1.1% in premarket trading Friday, has plunged 74.8% year to date through Thursday, while the S&P 500 has gained 0.5%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Sunworks stock pulls back, after disclosing delisting notice received just before the recent rally
Sunworks Inc. stock's recent rocket ride higher came at a good time for the photovoltaic-based power systems company. The stock tumbled 18.6% in premarket trading Friday, after the company disclosed that on Sept. 22, it has received a delisting notice from the Nasdaq, because it has failed to comply with the minimum bid price requirement, which states companies must maintain a minimum closing bid price for its stock of at least $1 a share. "The company is monitoring the bid price of its common stock and will consider options available to it to achieve compliance," Sunworks said in a statement. But after the stock closed at 77 cents on Sept. 22, it soared 50.4% on Wednesday to $1.16 and 238.8% on Thursday to close at $3.93. The rally came after the shares of SPI Energy Co. Ltd. , which also operates in the photovoltaic market, blasted 1,236.5% higher on Wednesday after the company announced it was starting an electric-vehicle subsidiary. Sunworks shares have more than tripled (up 214.4%) year to date through Thursday, while the S&P 500 has inched up 0.5%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Zillow raises home price growth outlook even as sales are set to 'gradually decline'
Zillow Group Inc. raised on Friday its outlook for home price growth over the next year, as sales and prices have stayed strong through the summer given increasingly short inventory and continued strong demand. The online real estate services company said it expects adjusted home prices to increase 1.2% from August to November. From August 2020 to August 2021, Zillow now expects adjusted home prices to rise 4.8%, up from a previous forecast of a 3.8% increase. The raised price outlook comes despite expectations for adjusted home sales to peak this fall and "gradually decline" through 2021, although sales volumes overall are expected to remain above pre-pandemic levels throughout this year and next. Zillow's Class C shares, which were little changed in premarket trading, have more than doubled (up 112.9%) year to date, while the S&P 500 has inched up 0.5%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Unity Software coverage on Wall Street started with a bullish call, $100 price target
D.A. Davidson analyst Franco Granda kicked off Wall Street coverage of Unity Software Inc. will a bullish rating, and a price target that was nearly double the initial public offering price. The videogame software company went public on Sept. 18, with the stock closing that day at $68.35, or 31.4% above its IPO price of $52; the stock closed Thursday at $83.20. Garda initiated Unity with a buy rating and $100 stock price target, saying he believes "this growth story has legs," as he expects a "meaningful revenue ramp" in the years ahead. " We like Unity for four reasons: exposure to the entire gaming market; significant growth opportunities in applications beyond gaming; a hybrid revenue model with plenty of upside; and potential beneficiary of the Epic Games vs. Apple feud (call option)," Granda wrote in a note to clients. He's the only analyst covering the stock that is followed by FactSet. Unity's stock fell 1.9% in premarket trading, after rising 21.7% over the past four days, while the S&P 500 has lost 2.2% over the same time.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Novavax stock rises as it announces vaccine manufacturing deal with Endo
Shares of Novavax Inc. jumped 6.8% in premarket trading on Friday after the company announced a COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing deal with Endo International . Endo's stock is up 7.3%. One of Endo's subsidiaries will provide fill-finish manufacturing services at a factory in Rochester, Mich.; the product being produced is expected to be used in the company's Phase 3 trials for NVX-CoV2373 in the U.S. as well as for potential general distribution to the public if the vaccine candidate receives any type of regulatory approval or authorization. Novavax CEO Stanley Erck said in the news release that the company is preparing for its pivotal Phase 3 clinical trial in the U.S. "to get underway very soon." On Thursday Novavax had announced that its vaccine candidate had entered Phase 3 clinical trials in the U.K. So far this year Novavax's stock is up 2,473.9%, shares of Endo are down 35.6%, and the S&P 500 is up 0.5%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Goldman's currency analysts say market is fearing Election Night uncertainty too much
Goldman Sachs currency analysts say the market is fearing uncertainty over the U.S. election too much. "We think the market appears to be pricing too high of a probability that it will take a long time to sort out the winner. We agree this is certainly a tail risk, but a number of states-including some key Battlegrounds-allow votes to be processed and counted well before Election Day. Taken together with cross-state correlation on many sources of polling errors, it seems likely that markets will have enough information on Election Night or soon thereafter to gauge the likely winner, even if the race takes longer to be officially called," said analysts Michael Cahill and Alec Phillips.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Coronavirus tally: U.S. case tally jumps to over 45,000 in a day as deaths rise by nearly 900
The global tally for confirmed cases of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 climbed to 32.26 million as of Friday morning, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University, while the death toll rose to 983,417. The U.S. was the world's leader with 6.98 million cases and 202,819 deaths. There were at least 885 new deaths in the U.S. on Thursday, up from 1,091 the day before, while new cases reported increased to 45,176 from 41,481, according to New York Times data. The new case tally compares with the daily average 41,859 over the past week, which is up 17% from the average two weeks earlier. Brazil has the second highest death toll in the world at 139,808 and third highest case tally at 4.66 million, JHU data show. India is third with 92,290 deaths and second with 5.82 million cases. Mexico is fourth with 75,439 deaths and seventh with 715,457 cases. The U.K. has 41,991 deaths and 418,889 cases, the highest death toll in Europe and fifth-highest in the world.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

VIA Optronics prices IPO at low end of expectations, raises $93.8 million
VIA Optronics AG's initial public offering priced at $15 per American depositary share, which was at the low end of the expected range of $15 to $17 per ADS. The Germany-based provider of interactive displays said late early Friday that it sold 6.25 million ADS in the IPO to raise $93.8 million. With 7.57 million ADS outstanding after the IPO, the pricing valued that company at $113.5 million. Berenberg was the sole book-running manager. The stock is expected to begin trading Friday on the NYSE under the ticker symbol "VIAO." The company is going public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has rallied 58.7% year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 0.5%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Graybug Vision prices upsized IPO at midpoint of expected range, raises $90 million
Graybug Vision Inc. said early Friday that its upsized initial public offering priced at $16 a share, in the middle of the expected range of $15 to $17 a share. The California-based biopharmaceutical company focused on retina and optic never disease treatments sold 5.625 million shares in the IPO, up from previous expectations of 4.79 million shares, to raise $90 million. With 19.16 million shares outstanding, the IPO pricing values that company at $306.5 million. The stock is expected to begin trading Friday on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "GRAY." SVB Leerink and Piper Sandler are acting as joint book-running managers. The company is going public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has gained 20.1% over the past three months while the S&P 500 has edged up 5.3%

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

PMV Pharmaceuticals prices IPO at top end of expectations, raises $211.8 million
PMV Pharmaceuticals Inc.'s initial public offering priced at $18 a share, which was at the top of the expected range of $16 to $18 a share. The oncology company said late Thursday that it sold 11.765 million shares in the IPO, which was recently upsized from 7.35 million shares, to raise $211.8 million. With 43 million shares outstanding after the IPO, the pricing valued that company at $773.99 million. Goldman Sachs, BofA Securities, Cowen and Evercore are the joint book-running managers. The stock is expected to begin trading Friday on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "PMVP." The company is going public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has rallied 20.1% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 5.3%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 25, 2020

Johnson Outdoors raises dividend by 23.5%
Johnson Outdoors Inc. said Friday that it is raising its quarterly dividend on its Class A shares by 23.5%, to 21 cents a share from 17 cents. The outdoor recreation products seller said the new dividend will be payable Oct. 23 to shareholders of record on Oct. 9. Based on Thursday's stock closing price of $80.36, the new annual dividend rate implies a dividend yield of 1.05%, compared with the implied yield for the S&P 500 of 1.74%. The stock, which is still inactive in premarket trading, has gained 4.8% year to date, while the S&P 500 has edged up 0.5%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

SEC fines BMW, U.S. subsidiaries for 'misleading' bond investors
The Securities and Exchange Commission has slapped Germany's BMW AG and two of the company's U.S. subsidiaries with a $18 million penalty for allegedly fudging U.S. sales numbers to mislead bond investors. The SEC said late Thursday it has settled charges against the auto maker for disclosing "inaccurate and misleading information" about retail sales volume in the U.S. while raising about $18 billion from investors in several corporate bond offerings. BMW "inflated" its U.S. retail sales from 2015 to 2019, helping to close the gap between actual retail sales volume and internal targets "and publicly maintain a leading retail sales position relative to other premium automotive companies," the SEC alleged. BMW of North America LLC kept a reserve of unreported retail vehicle sales it internally referred to as the "bank," the SEC said in a press release. That was used to meet internal monthly sales targets "without regard to when the underlying sales occurred," the SEC said. BMW North America also paid dealers to designate vehicles as test-driving vehicles or loaners so that the company could count them as having been sold to customers. Additionally, BMW North America "improperly" adjusted its retail sales reporting in 2015 and in 2017 to meet internal sales targets or bank excess retail sales for future use, the SEC said. As a result, the information that the company provided to investors looking at bond offerings through a BMW U.S. financing subsidiary as well as to credit ratings agencies "contained material misstatements and omissions regarding BMW's U.S. retail vehicle sales," the SEC said. BWM cooperated with the investigation, which was taken into consideration in imposing the penalty, the SEC said. The three companies agreed to pay a joint penalty of $18 million and "to cease and desist from future violations of these provisions," the SEC said.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.

MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Colony Capital stock jumps after company agrees to sell hotel assets for $2.8 billion
Shares of Colony Capital Inc. rose nearly 20% in the extended session Thursday after the real-estate investment firm said it has agreed to sell six of its hospitality portfolios to Highgate, a real-estate investment and hospitality management company. The deal is valued at $2.8 billion, including $67.5 million of gross proceeds and the assumption of $2.7 billion in debt. The six portfolios consist of 22,676 rooms across 197 hotel properties, Colony said. Colony is aiming "to focus exclusively on digital infrastructure assets," it said. "We are thrilled to be delivering on our commitment to dispose of non-core assets and harvest positive value for our hospitality business," Chief Executive Marc Ganzi said in a statement. "The sale of our legacy hospitality assets is a significant milestone in Colony's digital transformation as we pivot to focus exclusively on our fast-growing digital businesses that generate superior returns for Colony shareholders." The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2021. Shares of Colony ended the regular trading day down 1.3%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

: Vail Resorts stock falls on wider-than-expected loss
Vail Resorts Inc. MTN shares declined in the extended session Thursday after the ski resort operator reported a wider-than-expected loss. Vail shares fell as much as 6% after hours, following a 1.9% decline in the regular session to close at $224.23. The company reported a fiscal fourth-quarter loss of $153.6 million, or $3.82 a share, compared with $89.5 million, or $2.22 a share, in the year-ago period. Revenue fell to $77.2 million from $244 million in the year-ago quarter. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had forecast a loss of $3.47 a share on revenue of $138.3 million. "Given the uncertainty across the economy and the challenge COVID-19 has created for travel demand and specifically our assessment of the ultimate visitation to our resorts with evolving demand and capacity dynamics, the company will not be providing full year guidance for fiscal 2021 at this time," said Rob Katz, Vail chief executive, in a statement.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Dow trades in nearly 560-point range before eking out slight gain in choppy Thursday action
U.S. stocks traded on an unsteadily Thursday, with the major benchmarks swinging from solid gains to losses within minutes, at times, reflectin signs of softening economic data and a raft of uncertainties ahead, including a lack of additional economic stimulus and expected volatility from the 2020 presidential election. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up by about 52 points, or 0.2%, at 26,815, but not before trading within a 560-point range on the day. The Dow was down 226.12 points at the day's nadir and 331.72 at the session high. The S&P 500 index finished up 0.3% at 3,246, but momentarily traded beneath its correction level--defined as a drop of at least 10% from recent peak--at 3,222.76. Gains were aided by a rise in consumer staples and utilities , considered safety plays during times of uncertainty. The Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.4% to finish around 10,672, after touching a high at 10,799, and a low at 10,520. Investors parsed a report that House Democrats were putting together another coronavirus stimulus plan that would come in at $2.4 trillion, with a possible vote on the legislation, which would include unemployment benefits, direct payments, small business loans and airline aid, as soon as next week, CNBC reported. Meanwhile, weekly labor figures showed that some aspects of the coronavirus recovery are stalling out. Jobless claims rose 4,000 to 870,000, the Labor Department said Thursday, reflecting that slightly more Americans applied for state unemployment benefits in the week ended Sept. 19 than in the prior week. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had been looking for claims to decline to 850,000.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

House Democrats prepare new $2.4 trillion coronavirus aid bill
House Democratic lawmakers are preparing a new $2.4 trillion coronavirus aid package, according to multiple published reports on Thursday. The measure would have a lower price tag than the $3.4 trillion relief package that the Democratic-run House passed in May, and it comes as analysts have predicted that a divided Washington won't deliver another aid bill before the Nov. 3 elections.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Tesla's stock bounces sharply after brief early dip below key technical level
Shares of Tesla Inc. surging 3.2% in afternoon trading to $392.54, as they bounced sharply following a brief intraday dip below a key technical level. The stock was down as much as 7.6% to its intraday low of $351.30, which was hit soon after the open, before recovering. At the intraday low, the stock traded below the 50-day moving average, which currently extends to $364.18, for the first time since April 13. By 9:47 a.m. Eastern, the stock had climbed back above the 50-day, according to FactSet data, and hasn't been back there since. From the intraday low, the stock has now bounced 12%. The stock had previously come as close as 25 cents to the 50-day moving average without falling below it on Sept. 8, when it hit an intraday low of $329.88 versus a 50-day at the time of $329.63. Many technicians on Wall Street use the 50-day moving average line has a guide to the intermediate-term trend, so they suggest a stock's outlook remains positive as long as it holds above that line. Tesla's stock has now run up 369% year to date, while the S&P 500 has ticked up 0.6%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Oil futures log third straight session climb; natural-gas prices up nearly 6%
Oil futures rose on Thursday to tally a third straight session gain, finding support from signs of tighter crude supplies, even as concerns that rising cases of COVID-19 will lead to weaker energy demand remained. Natural-gas futures, meanwhile, stretched their rally to a second session, tacking on nearly 6%, with forecast for colder weather boosting demand prospects for the fuel. November West Texas Intermediate crude climbed 38 cents, or nearly 1%, to settle at $40.31 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. October natural gas settled at $2.248 per million British thermal units, up 12 cents, or 5.8%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Gold miner ETFs bounce higher as bullion notches its first daily gain in four days
Gold miner exchange-traded funds surged Thursday as the yellow metal price rose and the dollar softened further. The iShares MSCI Global Gold Miners ETF was up 2.6% at midday, while the VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF jumped more than 3%. The Sprott Gold Miners ETF jumped 3.4%. December gold rose 0.3% to settle at $1,874.30 an ounce Thursday, notching its first gain in four sessions. The gold price has dropped about 10% from its early August peak of $2,069.40. Miner stocks tend to move more dramatically than the price of the underlying metal.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Senate panel wants CEOs of Facebook, Google, Twitter to testify Oct. 1: report
The Republican-led Senate Commerce Committee plans to subpoena the CEOs of Facebook , Alphabet's Google and Twitter to testify at an Oct. 1 hearing if the three execs don't agree by Thursday night to requests to appear, according to a Politico report citing an internal committee email. The hearing is expected to cover Big Tech's liability protections. The news comes as the Trump administration pushes for curbs to longstanding legal protections for internet companies that would force them to shoulder more responsibility for managing content on their sites.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

PMV Pharma upsizes IPO by 60%, to now raise up to $211.8 million
PMV Pharmaceuticals Inc. has upsized its initial public offering by 60%, as the oncology company now looks to raise up to $211.8 million. The company is now offering 11.765 million shares in the IPO, up from 7.350 million, while the IPO's expected pricing range remains at between $16 and $18 a share. If the underwriters of the offering exercise options to buy up to an additional 1.76 million shares to cover overallotments, the company could raise up to $243.5 million. The company is looking to go public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has rallied 60.7% year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 1.4%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Gold futures score first gain in 4 sessions
Gold futures climbed Thursday to post their first gain in four sessions. Analysts attributed the rise to a bounce back in the wake of oversold conditions as the U.S. dollar weakened a bit for the session. Gold prices, however, remained sharply lower week to date as overall strength in the dollar, with the ICE U.S. Dollar Index up 1.5% for the week, dulling the appeal for the dollar-denominated precious metal. December gold tacked on $8.50, or nearly 0.5%, to settle at $1,876.90 an ounce.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Immunome sets IPO terms, to raise up to $32.5 million
Immunome Inc. set terms for its initial public offering, in which the Pennsylvania-based biopharmaceutical company focused on oncology looks to raise up to $32.5 million. The company is offering 2.5 million shares in the IPO, which is expected to price between $11 and $13 a share. With 9.3 million shares outstanding after the IPO, the pricing values the company at up to $120.7 million. The stock is expected to list on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "IMNM." The book-running managers are Ladenburg Thalmann and Chardan. For the six months ended June 30, the company recorded a net loss of $5.4 million on no revenue, after a loss of $4.8 million on no revenue in the same period a year ago. The company is looking to go public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF IPO has rallied 23.2% over the past three months, while the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF has declined 3.7% and the S&P 500 has gained 7.5%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

White House spokeswoman says Trump 'will accept the results of a free and fair election'
White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany on Thursday addressed President Donald Trump's refusal on Wednesday to commit to a peaceful transition of power in the event of his defeat in the Nov. 3 election. "The president will accept the results of a free and fair election," she said during a news conference. "He will accept the will of the American people."

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Blue Cross Blue Shield insurers reach $2.7 billion settlement deal of antitrust suit--WSJ
Blue Cross Blue Shield has reached a tentative agreement, which would require the insurance group to pay $2.7 billion, to settle an antitrust suit filed on behalf of its customers, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. Citing people with knowledge of the matter, the agreement would also require the insurance group to curtail practices that allegedly limited competition among its three dozen member companies, the WSJ report said. Although the Blue Cross Blue Shied Association has signed off on settlement deal, it has not yet been approved by the boards of all 36 Blue Cross Blue Shield insurers, the report said.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Gap gives each of its core brands its own loyalty program
Gap Inc. said Thursday that it has revamped its Bright Rewards loyalty program ahead of the holiday season in order to give each brand its own members. Gap Good Rewards will serve shoppers at the namesake label; Navyist Rewards will be for Old Navy fans; Banana Republic Rewards and Athleta Rewards are live now for enrollment in stores or online. Bright Rewards members, which total 9.5 million, have been moved to the program at the store in which they originally signed up. Members get two points for every $1 they spend. New members will get 250 points for enrolling through Oct. 31. Gap stock is down 6.4% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 1% for the period.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Pulmonx sets terms for IPO, which value med-tech company at more than $490 million
Pulmonx Corp. set terms for its initial public offering, in which the California-based medical technology company that provides treatment for emphysema looks to raise up to $106.7 million. The company is offering 6.67 million shares in the IPO, which is expected to price between $14 and $16 a share. With 30.72 shares outstanding after the IPO, the pricing values the company at up to $491.5 million. The stock is expected to list on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "LUNG." The lead underwriters are BofA Securities and Morgan Stanley. For the six months ended June 30, the company recorded a net loss of $19.1 million on revenue of $12.3 million, after a loss of $11.7 million on revenue of $13.1 million in the same period a year ago. Pulmonx is looking to go public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has rallied 22.9% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 7.0%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Owens & Minor's stock soars to pace NYSE gainers after boosting profit outlook, again
Shares of Owens & Minor Inc. shot up 57.4% on heavy volume in midday trading Thursday, enough to pace all of the NYSE's gainers, after the maker of medical surgical products raised its full-year profit outlook for the second time in two months, citing better-than-expected manufacturing output. Trading volume swelled to 11.7 million shares, compared with the full-day average of about 1.1 million shares. The stock was on track for the highest close since January 2018, and the biggest one-day gain since it rocketed 81.4% on July 27, when it more than doubled its 2020 earnings outlook. The company said earlier Thursday that it now expects 2020 adjusted earnings per share of $1.75 to $1.90, up from previous guidance of $1.00 to $1.20. Besides better-than-expected manufacturing output, the company said deployment of personal protective equipment (PPE) was ahead of schedule, elective procedure volume was slightly above previously expected levels and demand for PPE continued to be strong. The stock has rocketed more than fourfold (up 319.9%) year to date, while the SPDR Health Care Select Services ETF has slipped 0.3% and the S&P 500 has tacked on 0.9%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

EIA reports a smaller-than-expected weekly rise in U.S. natural-gas supplies
The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported Thursday that domestic supplies of natural gas rose by 66 billion cubic feet for the week ended Sept. 18. That was smaller than the increase of 77 billion cubic feet forecast by analysts polled by S&P Global Platts. Total stocks now stand at 3.680 trillion cubic feet, up 504 billion cubic feet from a year ago, and 407 billion cubic feet above the five-year average, the government said. October natural gas was up 13 cents, or 6.1%, at $2.255 per million British thermal units. It traded at $2.227 before the data.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

FedEx's stock paces Dow transports gainers after Stifel analyst turns bullish
Shares of FedEx Corp. rallied 1.2% in morning trading Thursday, to pace the gainers in the Dow Jones Transportation Average , after Stifel Nicolaus analyst David Ross turned bullish on the package delivery giant, citing signs that FedEx has been a beneficiary of the COVID-19 pandemic. The stock's rally comes as the Dow transports inched up less than 0.1% and shares of chief rival United Parcel Service Inc. shed 0.8%. In a research note titled, "Upgrading to buy; FedEx Flying High With Growing Package Pie," Ross raised his rating after being at hold for the past year, while boosting his price target to $281 from $175. "The big move in FDX off the lows earlier this year (Exhibit 1) has been warranted, in our view, as the world didn't come to an end, and FedEx has shown it is a "winner" from this odd 'pandemic' period," Ross wrote in a note to clients. The stock has rocketed 170% since closing at a more-than 7-year low of $90.49 on March 16, while UPS shares have rallied only 84% over the same time. Despite the outperformance off the post-COVID lows, Ross said FedEx's stock still trades at "an above-average discount" to UPS's. Year to date, FedEx shares have rallied 61.5%, UPS's stock has advanced 36.6%, the Dow transports has tacked on 1.8% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average has slipped 5.9%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

New home sales surge in August to levels not seen in 14 years
Sales of new single-family homes in August exceeded an annual rate of 1 million for the first time since 2006. New home sales occurred at a seasonally-adjusted, annual rate of 1.011 million, the Census Bureau reported Thursday. That represents a 4.8% increase from an upwardly-revised pace of 965,000 homes in July. Compared with last year, new home sales are up 43%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Stocks open lower as fiscal stimulus hopes fade
U.S. stocks fell at the open Thursday as investors grew increasingly pessimistic about additional economic support from Washington. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 76 points, 0.3%, to open near 26,687, while the S&P 500 was down 13 points, 0.4%, near 3,224. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 82 points, or 0.8%, and started trading near 10,551. On Thursday, the Labor Department said more Americans applied for first-time jobless benefits and the number of people on the unemployment rolls also increased. Shares of Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. bucked the downtrend on Thursday, gaining more than 4% in early trade as investors rewarded the stay-at-home economy and the company scored a price-target increase from UBS.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

New research indicates growing prevalence of possibly more infectious coronavirus strain in Houston area
New research from Houston indicates that the novel coronavirus has mutated, and the strain of the virus now primarily infecting people in the city's metropolitan area is thought to be more easily transmitted and more infectious, according to a preprint study published Wednesday by Houston Methodist Hospital researchers. A preprint is not a peer-reviewed study, which is considered the norm in medical research; however, preprints have become a popular way to disseminate scientific and medical findings during the COVID-19 pandemic. The researchers sequenced the genomes of 5,085 SARS-CoV-2 strains taken from what they describe as two "waves" of infections in that area, with the "first wave" beginning in early March. About 82% of the cases in the first wave were caused by strains with the Gly614 variant, they said, while 99% of the "second wave" of infections, which they say began May 12, were caused by strains with the Gly614 variant. People impacted during the second wave of infections tended to be younger, had fewer co-morbidities, were poorer, and more likely to be Latino. "Although the full array of factors contributing to the massive second wave in Houston is not known, it is possible that the potential for increased transmissibility of SARS-CoV-2 with the Gly614 may have played a role, as well as changes in behavior associated with the Memorial Day and July 4th holidays, and relaxation of some of the social constraints imposed during the first wave," the researchers wrote.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Coronavirus tally: U.S. death toll jumps by more than 1,000 in a day
The global tally for confirmed cases of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 climbed to 31..92 million, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University, while the death toll rose to 977,357. The U.S. was the world's leader with 6.94 million cases and 201,920 deaths. There were at least 1,091 new deaths in the U.S. on Wednesday, up from 942 the day before, while new cases reported increased to 41,481 from 37,237 on Tuesday, according to New York Times data. The new case tally compares with the daily average 41,868 over the past week, which is up 14% from the average two weeks earlier. Brazil has the second highest death toll in the world at 138,105 and third highest case tally at 4.59 million, JHU data show. India is third with 91,149 deaths and second with 5.73 million cases. Mexico is fourth with 74,949 deaths and seventh with 710,049 cases. The U.K. has 41,951 deaths and 412,249 cases, the highest death toll in Europe and fifth-highest in the world.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

SPI Energy's stock adds to previous day's rocket ride, as Sunworks' stock also soars
Shares of SPI Energy Co. Ltd. soared 54% in premarket trading, but that paled in comparison to the 1,236.5% rocket ride on massive volume in the previous session. The stock had run up as much as 4,154% intraday on Wednesday, before paring gains, after the company, which offers photovoltaic solutions for business, residential, government and utility customers, said it was starting an electric-vehicle subsidiary, as MarketWatch's Mark DeCambre reported. The stock's trading volume about an hour ahead of Thursday's open was 2.5 million shares; on Wednesday, volume was 348.3 million shares. Meanwhile, shares of Sunworks Inc. , which also makes photovoltaic-based power systems, shot up 353% on volume of 17.5 million shares in Thursday's premarket, after climbing 50.4% on volume of 110.5 million shares on Wednesday. The stocks' rallies premarket comes while futures for the S&P 500 are slipping 0.3%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

United Airlines to make rapid COVID-19 tests available to some travelers
United Airlines Holdings Inc. said Thursday it has launched a testing program in which it will make COVID-19 tests available to some travelers. United said it was teaming up with GoHealth Urgent Care, starting Oct. 15, to give those traveling on United from San Francisco to Hawaii the option to take a rapid test at the airport, or a self-taken mail-in test ahead of their trip. The air carrier said the rapid tests provides results in about 15 minutes, while it recommends customers using the mail-in test to provide samples within 72 hours of their trip. "Our new COVID testing program is another way we are helping customers meet their destinations' entry requirements, safely and conveniently," said United Chief Customer Officer Toby Enqvist. United's stock, which edged up 0.2% in premarket trading, has tumbled 62.5% year to date through Wednesday, while the U.S. Global Jets ETF has dropped 47.0% and the S&P 500 has inched up 0.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Scripps' stock rockets after $2.65 billion ION Media deal is backed by Warren Buffett
Shares of E.W. Scripps Co. rocketed 43% toward an 8-month high in premarket trading Thursday, after the TV station owner confirmed a deal to buy the broadcast network ION Media for $2.65 billion, in a deal backed by Warren Buffett. As part of the deal, Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. will make a $600 million equity investment in Scripps to help fund the deal. Based on Scripps' stock closing price of $10.47 on Wednesday, the investment represents about 57.3 million shares, or roughly 70% of the shares outstanding. Berkshire was the Scripps' second largest shareholder before the deal, with 5.7% of the shares outstanding, according to FactSet. Berkshire will also receive a warrant to buy an additional 23.1 million shares at $13. The Wall Street Journal had reported earlier that the deal was near. Scripps expects the deal will yield $500 million in synergies and be "highly accretive" to earnings. "For more than 70 years, Scripps has been dedicated to local broadcasting and the markets we serve with an unparalleled commitment to quality objective journalism, community service and stewardship of the public's airwaves," said Scripps Chief Executive Adam Symson. "Now, with this national broadcasting acquisition, Scripps will be the largest holder of broadcast spectrum, poised to take an even greater leadership role in the development of future business models that leverage ATSC 3.0 and spectrum to benefit the American people." Scripps stock had dropped 33.4% year to date through Wednesday, while the S&P 500 had edged up 0.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Lira jumps after Turkey's central bank hikes key rate by 200 basis points
The beaten-down Turkish lira jumped Thursday after the Turkey's central bank unexpectedly raised its one-week auction repo rate to 10.25% from 8.25%. The U.S. dollar fell 1.2% versus the Turkish currency to fetch 7.607 liras. The lira has tumbled this year, with the dollar up around 28% versus the currency so far in 2020. A rate hike was seen as justified due to worries the fall in the lira posed a threat to inflation and financial stability, but wasn't expected, said analysts at Rabobank ahead of the decision. In a statement, the central bank's Monetary Policy Committee said that "maintaining a sustained disinflation process is a key factor for achieving lower sovereign risk, lower long-term interest rates, and stronger economic recovery. Keeping the disinflation process in track with the targeted path requires the continuation of a cautious monetary stance."

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Shares of Olive Garden parent slip after sales miss
Darden Restaurants Inc. shares fell 1.1% in Thursday premarket trading after the Olive Garden parent reported fiscal first quarter sales that missed expectations. Net income totaled $36.1 million, or 28 cents per share, down from $170.6 million, or $1.37 per share, last year. Adjusted EPS of 56 cents was well ahead of the FactSet consensus for 5 cents per share. Sales of $1.53 billion were down from $2.13 billion last year and just below the FactSet consensus for $1.56 billion. Sales at Olive Garden were down 27.7% to $788.2 million, sales at Longhorn Steakhouse fell 16.3% to $376.8 million, and fine dining sales sank 38.9% to $83.1 million. Other names in the Darden portfolio include The Capital Grille, Seasons 52 and Bahama Breeze. Same-restaurant sales for Darden were down 21.9% for the quarter, ahead of the FactSet consensus for a 25.5% drop. Olive Garden same-restaurant sales were down 21.1% and Longhorn Steakhouse was down 11.3%. Darden declared a 30-cents-per-share cash dividend payable on Nov. 2 to shareholders of record as of close of business on Oct. 9. Darden is guiding for fiscal second-quarter sales of 82% of last year's total of $2.06 billion, or about $1.69 billion, and earnings per share of 65 cents to 75 cents. The FactSet consensus is for sales of $1.77 billion and EPS of 35 cents. Darden stock is down 17.4% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 0.2% for the period.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Penn National Gaming's stock slumps after public stock offering launched
Shares of Penn National Gaming Inc. slumped 5.1% in premarket trading Thursday, after the online gaming company said it has launched a public offering of 14 million shares of its common stock. The offering represents about 10.2% of the approximately 137.6 million shares outstanding. Based on Wednesday's stock closing price of $69.00, 14 million shares would be valued at $202.9 million. Penn said it plans to grant the underwriters of the offering options to buy up to an additional 2.1 million shares. The company expects to use the proceeds from the offering for general corporate purposes. The stock has soared 170% year to date through Wednesday, while the S&P 500 has gained 0.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Accenture's stock drops after profit, revenue fall shy of expectations
Shares of Accenture PLC dropped 4.1% in premarket trading Thursday, after the professional services and consulting company reported fiscal fourth-quarter profit and revenue that fell shy of expectations. Net income for the quarter to Aug. 31 rose to $1.29 billion, or $1.99 a share, from $1.13 billion, or $1.74 a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding non-recurring items, such as gains on investments, adjusted earnings per share fell 2% to $1.70, below the FactSet consensus of $1.73. Revenue declined 2% to $10.84 billion, missing the FactSet consensus of $10.93 billion, amid a decline in revenue from reimbursable travel costs and the negative effects of foreign currency translation. New bookings increased 8% to $14.0 billion, including consulting new bookings of $6.5 billion and outsourcing new bookings of $7.5 billion. For 2021, Accenture expects EPS of $7.80 to $8.10, while the FactSet EPS consensus is $8.13. The stock has gained 9.5% year to date through Wednesday, while the S&P 500 has edged up 0.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Nikola's stock tumbles after Wedbush's Ives turns bearish, slashes price target
Shares of Nikola Corp. tumbled 9.3% in premarket trading Thursday, after Wedbush analyst Dan Ives turned bearish on the electric truck maker, saying he now believes the downside risks outweigh any positives. He cut his rating to underperform from neutral, and slashed his stock price target to $15, which is 29% below Wednesday's closing price of $21.15, from $45. The downgrade follows a volatile few weeks, that included a landmark partnership announced with General Motors Co. , a short-seller report and the sudden resignation of Founder Trevor Milton as executive chairman. In a note titled, "The Light has Turned From Yellow to Red," Ives said he still believes Nikola's EV and hydrogen fuel cell ambitions are attainable in the semi-truck market, he now has "serious concerns" that the execution and timing of these goals can stay on track in the coming years. "The recent questions surrounding the Nikola story raised by the bears will be a dark cloud over the stock until answered, especially with no fundamental or delivery catalysts in the near term," Ives wrote in the note. "[N]ikola has made no revenue over the last 4 years, burns cash at a rapid rate, and has some stout competition already off and running in the electric trucking space (Tesla, Daimler)," he added. The stock has still more than doubled year to date through Wednesday, but it has plunged 71.5% over the past three months while Tesla Inc.'s stock has run up 97.9% and the S&P 500 has gained 6.1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Goldman upgraded to buy at UBS, says election volatility could be a boost
Goldman Sachs was upgraded to buy from neutral at UBS, which lifted its price target to $245 from $220. "Goldman is generating solid results in the current environment, which has sustained in the third quarter and potential volatility from the upcoming U.S. election could allow for a solid fourth quarter, bridging investors to first-quarter seasonal strength. Further, in 2021 we expect the efficiency efforts from GS's strategic plans to begin to impact the P&L, driving down the efficiency ratio, leading to upside to earnings forecasts," said analysts led by Brennan Hawken. Goldman, which closed Wednesday at $187.72, has dropped 19% this year, compared to a 0.2% gain for the broader S&P 500 .

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Harley-Davidson takes more restructuring actions, including exiting India market
Harley-Davidson Inc. disclosed Thursday that it informed its employees of additional restructuring actions related to its previously disclosed actions, which were related to "The Rewire" actions approved through Aug. 5. Since then through Sept. 23, the additional restructuring actions included discontinuing sales and manufacturing operations in India, which led to 70 employees being laid off. The motorcycle maker said it expects restructuring costs in 2020 of $75 million for the actions taken from Aug. 6 through Sept. 23, and total costs associated its "Rewire" actions of $169 million this year. Harley expects to complete the restructuring actions from August to be completed within the next 12 months. Harley's stock, which was still inactive in premarket trading, has tumbled 37.4% year to date, while the S&P 500 has inched up 0.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 24, 2020

Intel says its Mobileye chips will be in Geely vehicles
Intel said its Mobileye division will help power the driving-assistance technology in Chinese carmaker's Lynk & Co premium electric vehicle, Zero Concept, which is due for release in fall 2021. Intel also said it has an agreement to equip a variety of Geely Auto Group makes and models with Mobileye vision-sensing technology.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

: Quadrant Biosciences gets FDA approval for saliva-based COVID-19 test
Quadrant Biosciences said late Wednesday it received an emergency approval from the Food and Drug Administration for a saliva-based COVID-19 test. The privately held Syracuse, N.Y.-based company developed the test along with State University of New York's Upstate Medical University. Called the "Clarifi COVID-19" test, the diagnostic collects saliva with a swab and uses reagents to detect nucleic acid from SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. The test is available for bulk purchases immediately by clinical laboratories for use at healthcare facilities, Quadrant said.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

: CrowdStrike to acquire Preempt Security for $96 million
CrowdStrike Holdings Inc. CRWD said late Wednesday it agreed to acquire Preempt Security for $96 million. CrowdStrike said Preempt is a leader in Zero Trust security technology, or the practice of treating all network traffic as a threat until it's verified as safe, which will add "enhanced" Zero Trust capabilities to the company's Falcon security platform. The deal, which involves $86 million cash and $10 million in CrowdStrike stock, is expected to close in the third fiscal quarter. CrowdStrike shares declined 0.2% after hours, following a 2.9% decline in the regular session to close at $138.60. CrowdStrike shares are up 178% for the year, compared with a 0.2% gain on the S&P 500 index SPX.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Dollar Tree restarts share buyback program
Dollar Tree Inc. said late Wednesday it is resuming its share buyback program, which had been halted in March in response to pandemic-related restrictions and uncertainties. The company said in a filing it had $800 million remaining under its board's repurchase authorization. Shares will be purchased "from time to time at prevailing market prices, through open market or privately negotiated transactions, depending upon market conditions," the company said. Shares of Dollar Tree rose 0.6% in the extended session after ending the regular trading day down 0.1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Retailer Academy Sports and Outdoors sets IPO range at $15-$17
Academy Sports and Outdoors late Wednesday set its initial public offering terms, hoping to sell 15.625 million shares between $15 and $17 a share. The Texas-based sporting goods and recreation retailer would become a public company amid difficult times for the retail industry, beset by recent bankruptcies and competition with online-only retailers. Academy Sports and Outdoors has applied for listing on the Nasdaq, with underwriters including Credit Suisse, J.P. Morgan, and BofA Securities. For the six months ended Aug. 1, the company recorded net income of $157.7 million on revenue of $2.74 billion, after net income of $73.8 million on revenue of $2.31 billion in the same period a year ago.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Trump says he thinks Supreme Court will rule on election outcome so 9th justice needed
President Donald Trump on Wednesday suggested the Supreme Court will have to make a ruling on the Nov. 3 presidential election, so a new justice for the high court should be confirmed before Election Day. "I think it's better if you go before the election, because I think this scam that the Democrats are pulling -- it's a scam -- the scam will be before the United States Supreme Court," Trump told reporters at the White House, in an apparent reference to efforts to increase mail-in voting during the coronavirus pandemic. "I think having a 4-4 situation is not a good situation, if you get that."

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Dow closes 525 points lower and S&P 500 stares down first correction since March as stock market hits session low
Stocks faced heavy selling Wednesday, pushing the main equity benchmarks to approach lows achieved earlier in the week as investors' appetite for assets perceived as risky appeared to abate. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 525 points, or 1.9%,lower at 26,763, around its low for the day, while the S&P 500 index declined 2.4% to 3,237, threatening to push the index closer to correction at 3,222.76 for the first time since March. The Nasdaq Composite Index retreated 3% to reach 10,633, deepening its slide in correction territory, defined as a drop of at least 10% from a recent peak.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Dow tumbles 525 points on Wednesday, setting up worst weekly slump since June as tech, energy fall
Stocks ended sharply lower Wednesday resuming a decidedly downward tilt on for Wall Street as a dearth of bullish factors gave way to a continuation of a sell-off for major benchmarks that commenced in earnest on Monday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average [: DJIA] fell 2% to close around 26,770, the S&P 500 index closed off 2.4% at 2,236, with the broad-market index flirting with a close near correction at 3,222.76. All of the S&P 500's 11 sectors finished sharply lower on the session, led by a 4.5% decline in energy and a 3.2% decline in the technology sector . Wednesday's losses bring the Dow and the S&P 500 on track to mark their worst weekly drops since late June. The Nasdaq Composite index closed of 3% at around 10,633, deepening its slump into correction, defined as a drop of at least 10% from a recent peak. All closing levels are on a preliminary level.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

TikTok seeks injunction to stop Trump ban
TikTok filed for an injunction Wednesday to stop President Trump from banning the video-sharing app from being downloaded, an action that is expected to happen Sept. 27 unless a deal involving Oracle Corp. and Walmart Inc. is completed. President Trump issued an executive order last month that sought to ban TikTok and WeChat, a messaging app owned by Tencent Holdings Ltd. , due to their Chinese ownership. WeChat managed to receive an injunction through the court system to stop its ban, as TikTok attempted to strike a deal for a new corporation in the U.S. that would be partially owned by Oracle and Walmart. That deal is still in doubt, however, so TikTok and Chinese parent company ByteDance filed for an injunction Wednesday. "If allowed to remain in place, the Prohibitions will irreversibly destroy the TikTok business in the United States: they will devastate TikTok's user base and competitive position, destroy the goodwill necessary for TikTok to maintain commercial partners in the United States, and cripple Plaintiffs' ability to attract and retain talent," the filing seeking an injunction states.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Dow tumbles more than 400 points as stock market hits session lows in Wednesday afternoon sell-off
Stocks were facing heavy selling Wednesday afternoon, pushing the main equity benchmarks to trade near session lows as investors' appetite for assets perceived as risky appeared to abate. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was off 430 points, or 1.6%, at 26,856, around its low for the day, while the S&P 500 index declined 1.9% to 3,252, threatening to push the index into correction for the first time since March. The Nasdaq Composite Index retreated 2.6% at 10,682, deepening its slide in correction territory, defined as a drop of at least 10% from a recent peak.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Natural-gas futures climb by nearly 16%; oil pares gains by the close
Natural-gas futures rallied Wednesday, finding support from reported disruptions from storm-related flooding to liquefied natural gas facilities in Texas as well as signs of strong demand. Oil prices, meanwhile, finished higher, but saw only a modest gain in the wake of data showing a second straight weekly decline in U.S. crude supplies. U.S. benchmark prices failed to reclaim the $40 mark as fresh lockdown measures in Europe, amid a rise in coronavirus cases, fed expectations for weaker energy demand. On the New York Mercantile Exchange, October natural gas rose 29 cents, or nearly 16%, to settle at $2.125 per million British thermal units. November West Texas Intermediate crude settled at $39.93 a barrel, up 13 cents, or 0.3%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Stock of tiny SPI Energy skyrockets 3,100% on Wednesday as it announces EV venture
Shares of SPI Energy on Wednesday were soaring an astonishing 3,100% on the session, following an announcement by the company that it was starting an electric-vehicle subsidiary. SPI Energy , which is described as offering photovoltaic solutions for business, residential, government and utility customers and investors, saw its shares trade at $33.53 a share after closing on Tuesday at $1.05, according to FactSet data. The surge in the company's shares, has pushed its market value from roughly $15 million to around $460 million, the data show. The company on Wednesday said it launched its wholly owned subsidiary, EdisonFuture, which is intended to design and develop electric-vehicles and EV charging solutions. That would pit the company against the likes of Tesla Inc. , which is one of the most popular EV makers on the planet and a manufacturer of its own EV batteries. Xiaofeng Peng, CEO of SPI Energy, in a statement said: "As Tesla has demonstrated, an end-to-end business model in the renewable energy space can generate significant value. With the addition of EV and EV charging segments to our diverse solar business, we are positioning SPI Energy for the future of renewable energy."

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Nike's best day in six months boosts consumer ETFs
Exchange-traded funds with big exposure to Nike, Inc. avoided the losses of the broader market Wednesday, as shares of the sports apparel maker surged nearly 10% on a rosy earnings report. The Amplify CWP Enhanced Dividend Income ETF , which has nearly 6% of its holdings in the stock, was virtually unchanged. The iShares Evolved U.S. Discretionary Spending ETF and the QRAFT AI-Enhanced U.S. High Dividend ETF , both of which have about 6% of their holdings in Nike stock, were both virtually unchanged for the day. The First Trust Dow 30 Equal Weight ETF , with a 4% holding, was down 0.4%. That beat the 0.9% decline in the S&P 500 . Wednesday marked Nike's biggest gain since March 24, according to FactSet data.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Fed's Quarles says he is optimistic about outlook for U.S. economy
The U.S. economy is likely to be able to avoid the worst outcomes that were feared in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, said Randal Quarles, the Fed's vice chairman for banking supervision, on Wednesday. "A recovery is underway and the world seems to be adjusting in ways that allow us to address public concerns about the virus without sudden stops in economic activity," Quarles said, in a speech to the Institute of International Bankers. Quarles said there are signs of the beginnings of a strong recovery but noted it will take a long time to fully recover from the shock. He said he agreed with Fed Chairman Jerome Powell that it will take continued support to sustain a robust recovery.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

New Year's Eve celebrations in New York will be held virtually, organizers announce
New Year's Eve Celebrations in New York will be held virtually this year, organizers announced Wednesday. In a news release, the Times Square Alliance said the Dec. 31 event will be "a virtually enhanced celebration that brings Times Square and The Ball to you digitally no matter where you are, scaled-back and socially distanced live elements still to be determined, and an extremely limited group of in-person honorees, socially distanced, who will reflect the themes, challenges and inspirations of 2020." Details are still in the works, according to Tim Tompkins, President of the Times Square Alliance, which co-produces the event with Countdown Entertainment. "This year there will be significantly new and enhanced virtual, visual and digital offerings to complement whatever limited live entertainment or experiences - still in development - will take place in Times Square," he said in the news release. The announcement comes as the number of deaths in the U.S. as a result of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 surged past the 200,000 mark, while the global count climbed closer to 1 million. The viral pandemic that has spread across the world has caused numerous business closures and forced economies to shutdown in order to mitigate the deadly contagion. --Pete Catapano

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Gold futures settle at a 2-month low
Gold futures fell sharply on Wednesday to settle at their lowest in two months. Prices declined for a third straight session as analysts continued to attribute weakness in the metal to strength in the U.S. dollar, which has found support on the heels of the rise in cases in Europe. December gold lost $39.20, or nearly 2.1%, to settle at $1,868.40 an ounce. Prices marked the lowest settlement for a most-active contract since July 22, according to FactSet data.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Western Digital stock gains amid hope formal spin off could follow business reorganization
Shares of Western Digital Corp. are up 8% in Wednesday afternoon trading after the company announced it would reorganize itself by creating separate units for its flash and hard-disk drive [HDD] businesses. "The business reorganization could be a first step towards a formal split between the two units longer term, which would unlock stock value, relieve the company from heavy capex investments and emerging competition from China, while resulting in a more focused HDD business," Baird analyst Tristan Gerra wrote in a note to clients, while reiterating an outperform rating and $50 target price on the stock. Others saw less room for big business-model changes but still pointed to possible benefits. "We believe the move is an indication of the new CEO's goal to better strategically align R&D/product development resources towards growth end markets," wrote Susquehanna's Mehdi Hosseini, who has a positive rating on the stock. WDC shares have fallen 9.4% over the past three months as the S&P 500 has gained 5.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Laird Superfood's stock opens more than 50% above IPO price, and keeps rising
Shares of Laird Superfood Inc. enjoyed a super start to their public life, as the Oregon-based plant-based and functional foods company's stock opened 52.5% above its initial public offering price, then kept climbing. The first trade was at $33.55 at 11:52 a.m. Eastern for 145,950 shares. The IPO price late Tuesday at $22 a share, at the top of the expected range. The company sold 2.65 million shares to raise $58.3 million, and the IPO pricing valued that company at $184.3 million. The stock has rallied further since the opening, and was last trading 76% above its IPO price. The company went public at a good time for IPOs, as the Renaissance IPO ETF has run up 24.0% over the past three months while the S&P 500 has gained 5.3%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Trump announces new restrictions on Cuba as he courts Florida voters
President Donald Trump on Wednesday said his administration will impose new restrictions on Cuba, in a move that looks to have been designed in part to win over voters in Florida, where Cuban-Americans who oppose the country's communist regime are a key voting bloc. "The Treasury Department will prohibit U.S. travelers from staying at properties owned by the Cuban government. We're also further restricting the importation of Cuban alcohol and Cuban tobacco," Trump said Wednesday at a White House event honoring veterans of the Bay of Pigs Invasion.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Fed's Evans: My comment that got markets' attention was really just a reading of already released Sept. statement
Chicago Fed President Charles Evans said Wednesday that his comment that moved financial markets earlier in the week was just a simple reading of the central bank's already-released September policy statement. "I really thought that I was pretty much reading out what our September policy statement was saying," Evans said, during a conversation sponsored by MNI. Evans said that the Fed statement says the Fed expects to hold its policy rate close to zero until inflation gets to 2%. After that, the Fed can begin to raise rates but policy will still be accommodative as the Fed seeks to get inflation to average 2% over some time. The dollar rose as traders interpreted his comment as a signal of an earlier lift-off of zero than anticipated. Evans said he thinks markets should understand that a 2.5% inflation rate for some period of time "is likely in the cards" if the central bank is doing its job right.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

FDA commissioner: It's up to drug makers developing vaccines to seek approval or EUA
Drug makers developing COVID-19 vaccines will decide to seek full approval from the Food and Drug Administration or the less rigorous emergency use authorization (EUA), according to remarks made by FDA commissioner Dr. Stephen Hahn during a congressional hearing on Wednesday. "This will be based upon the trial meeting pre-specified success criteria that were established by that sponsor," Hahn said. The EUA option was put into place during the pandemic to speed up the arrival of new tests, treatments, and vaccines; however, once the U.S. ends the public health emergency, the EUA is no longer valid. Four COVID-19 vaccine candidates are currently in Phase 3 clinical trials, including candidates developed by AstraZeneca's and the University of Oxford, BioNTech and Pfizer Inc. , Johnson & Johnson , and Moderna Inc. .

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Fauci predicts U.S. will know if COVID-19 vaccines are effective by "November or December"
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, expects to see data from the Phase 3 clinical trials of some COVID-19 vaccine candidates indicating whether the vaccines are safe and effective by "November or December" of this year. Fauci made the remarks while testifying during a congressional hearing on Wednesday. There are four experimental coronavirus vaccines in late-stage studies in the U.S., including candidates developed by AstraZeneca's and the University of Oxford, BioNTech and Pfizer Inc. , Johnson & Johnson , and Moderna Inc. . "We feel strongly that if we have a combination of adherence to the public health measures together with a vaccine that will be distributed to people in this country and worldwide, we may be able to turn around this terrible pandemic that which we have been experiencing," he said. Drs. Robert Redfield, director for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Stephen Hahn, commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, are also testifying.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

EIA reports a second weekly decline in U.S. crude supplies
The Energy Information Administration reported Wednesday that U.S. crude inventories fell for a second straight week by 1.6 million barrels for the week ended Sept. 18. That was much less than the average forecast from analysts polled by S&P Global Platts for a decline of 4 million barrels, but the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday had reported an increase of 691,000 barrels, according to sources. The EIA data also showed crude stocks at the Cushing, Okla., storage hub unchanged for the week at 54.3 million barrels. Gasoline supply, meanwhile, fell by 4 million barrels, while distillate stockpiles declined by 3.4 million barrels. The S&P Global Platts survey had shown expectations for a supply fall of 1.9 million barrels for gasoline, while distillates were expected to rise by 1.2 million barrels. November West Texas Intermediate crude was up 23 cents, or 0.6%, at $40.03 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Prices traded at $39.98 before the supply data.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

American Express stock sinks after BofA analyst suggests it's time to sell
Shares of American Express Co. sank 2.1% in morning trading Wednesday, after BofA Securities analyst Mihir Bhatia turned bearish on the credit card and travel services company, citing concerns over billing volumes, particularly in airline and lodging. Bhatia lowered the rating on the stock to underperform, or the equivalent of sell, from neutral, and trimmed the price target to $95 from $106. "BofA Sector Analysts estimate it could be 2024 before spending volumes on airlines and lodging are at 2019 levels, and a full recovery is dependent on a vaccine being available and widely administered," Bhatia wrote in a note to clients. "We believe spending volume or billings is perhaps the most important metric for [American Express]," Bhatia added. The stock has dropped 22.5% year to date, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has slipped 4.2%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Nike's stock rally keeping the Dow in positive territory
Investors can thank Nike Inc.'s stock for keeping the Dow Jones Industrial Average in positive territory, despite the declines in the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite indexes. Nike's stock surged 8.9% in morning trading after the athletic gear giant late Tuesday better-than-expected earnings. The price gain of $10.34 is adding about 68 points to the Dow's price, which is up 25 points, or 0.1%. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 is down 0.3% and the Nasdaq is down 0.8%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Apple stock drops after downgrade at UBS
UBS downgraded Apple Inc. shares late Tuesday as analyst David Vogt assumed coverage of the company and lowered UBS's rating to neutral from buy. "[W]hile shares of Apple typically outperform the market in the months leading to an iPhone launch, subsequent to the launch, shares have historically underperformed the market," Vogt wrote. The stock is trading at 29 times his estimates for earnings per share over the next 12 months, and it trades at 1.5 standard deviations about its trailing one-year mean, he said. "We think Apple shares already reflect the growth from the '5G cycle,'" Vogt wrote. He expects services revenue linked to iPhone sales to "materially decelerate" and said that a reacceleration would be crucial to driving upside. Vogt raised his price target on Apple's stock to $115 from $106 in conjunction with the downgrade. Apple shares are off 0.3% in morning trading Wednesday. They've gained 21% over the past three months as the Dow Jones Industrial Average has added about 5%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Dow rises over 100 points as stocks continue rebound from selloff
Stocks opened mostly higher Wednesday, a day after the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite snapped four-day losing streaks and the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended a three-day string of declines. The Dow rose 130 points, or 0.5%, to 27,418, while the S&P 500 rose 0.1% to 3,319. The Nasdaq Composite lagged behind, falling 0.2% to 10,947. Shares of Dow component Nike Inc. soared more than 9% after the athletic-apparel maker late Tuesday reported quarterly results that beat expectations. Shares of Johnson & Johnson rose 2% after the company said it launched its pivotal global Phase 3 trial of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Twitter stock gains after Pivotal Research upgrade
Shares of Twitter Inc. are up about 2% in premarket trading Wednesday after Pivotal Research Group analyst Michael Levine upgraded the stock to buy from hold with a target price of $59.75. "Investors will admittedly need to underwrite a high multiple with a company that has had some historical executional hiccups," Levine wrote. "We believe it will be warranted if the ship is moving in the right direction as we suspect." He is upbeat about the company's potential to capitalize on the Olympics next year, as well as the possibility of some real momentum with Twitter's direct-response ad offerings. "While we still have some question marks about the [direct-response] business, we see signs of life," he wrote. "Additionally, we think sentiment is by far the most negative in our coverage and as a result, the rubber band for stock out-performance the greatest." Shares have added 35% over the past three months as the S&P 500 has risen about 6%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Cintas's stock shoots up after big profit beat
Shares of Cintas Corp. shot up 4.3% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the uniform rentals company reported fiscal first-quarter profit that rose well above expectation and revenue that fell less than forecast. Net income for the quarter to Aug. 31 increased to $300.0 million, or $2.78 a share, from $250.8 million, or $2.32 a share, in the year-ago period. The FactSet consensus for earnings per share was $2.13. Total revenue fell 3.6% to $1.75 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $1.70 billion, as uniform rental and facilities services revenue fell 4.1% to $1.39 billion but topped expectations of $1.36 billion. The company said the COVID-19 pandemic remains a "significant disruption" to its business, and continues to impair visibility into future financial performance. The company isn't providing a full-year outlook, but said it expects second-quarter EPS of $2.00 to $2.20 and revenue of $1.725 billion to $1.750 billion. The FactSet consensus for second-quarter EPS is $2.06 and for revenue is $1.752 billion. Cintas's stock has soared 20.4% year to date through Tuesday, while the S&P 500 has gained 2.6%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Citigroup to spend more than $1 billion to help close racial wealth gap
Citigroup Inc. said Wednesday it is launching more than $1 billion in strategic initiatives to help close the racial wealth gap in the U.S. and improve economic mobility. The initiatives include $550 million to support home ownership for people of color and for minority developers of affordable housing, $350 million in procurement opportunities for Black-owned business suppliers, $100 million to support minority depository institutions, $100 million to support community change agents addressing racial equity and $50 million in additional investing capital for Black entrepreneurs. A recent Citigroup report estimated that if racial gaps for Black Americans in wages, housing, education and investment were closed 20 years ago, $16 trillion could have been added to the U.S. economy. Citigroup estimates if the gaps are closed now, $5 trillion could be added to gross domestic product over the next five years. "We are bringing together all the capabilities of our institution - our people, our lines of business, our balance sheet, and our philanthropy - like never before to combat the impact of racism in our economy," said Citigroup Chief Executive Michael Corbat. Citigroup's stock, which rose 0.8% in premarket trading, has dropped 45.8% year to date through Tuesday, while the SPDR Financial Select Sector ETF has shed 22.9% and the S&P 500 has gained 2.6%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Tesla's stock falls, but Oppenheimer's Rusch says buy on weakness
Shares of Tesla Inc. took a 5.8% premarket hit Wednesday, after investors apparently deemed the electric vehicle company's Battery Day as disappointing, but Oppenheimer analyst Colin Rusch was more upbeat, saying he would be "buyers on any near-term weakness." Rusch reiterated the outperform rating he's had on the stock for at least the past two years and kept his price target at $451. He said Tesla outlined a "robust reimagining of battery design, manufacturing and performance," including targeting a $25,000 vehicle in three years and a 20-times capacity increase by 2030. Rusch also noted that Tesla's 30% to 40% delivery growth guidance for 2020 is above consensus estimates. "We are impressed with the ambition of the endeavor and believe this roadmap charts ongoing technology and cost leadership for [Tesla] enabling sales into the entire LDV market," Rusch wrote in a note to clients. "While limited details may weigh on shares, we would be buyers on any near-term weakness." Tesla's stock has more than doubled (up 111.7%) over the past three months through Tuesday, while the S&P 500 has gained 5.9%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Reports say Amazon Prime Day will take place on Oct. 13 though the e-commerce giant hasn't confirmed
Media reports say Amazon.com Inc.'s big Prime Day shopping event will take place on Oct. 13, but the e-commerce giant hasn't confirmed the date. Prime Day, which usually takes place over the summer, has been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic. The event has taken place over two days in the past. CNET sources didn't specify how long Prime Day will be this year, though Amazon has said it will be in the fourth quarter. Amazon stock has rallied more than 69% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 2.6% for the period.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Coronavirus tally: U.S. daily death toll more than doubled to 942, pushing total to nearly 201,000
The global tally for confirmed cases of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 climbed to 31.64 million, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University, while the death toll rose to 971,483. The U.S. continued to lead the world with 6.90 million cases and 200,818 deaths. There were 37,237 new cases reported in the U.S. on Tuesday, down from 54,875 on Monday, but the daily death toll more than doubled to at least 942 from at least 428 on Monday, according to New York Times data. The new case tally compares with the daily average 41,481 over the past week, which is up 13% from the average two weeks earlier. Brazil has the second highest death toll at 138,105 and third highest case tally at 4.59 million. India is third with 90,020 deaths and second with 5.65 million cases. Mexico is fourth with 74,348 deaths and seventh with 705,263 cases. The U.K. has 41,951 deaths and 406,058 cases, the highest death toll in Europe and fifth-highest in the world.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

General Mills stock rises after the Cheerios parent reports an earnings beat and raised its dividend
General Mills Inc. stock rose 3.44% in premarket trading after the Cheerios parent reported fiscal first-quarter earnings beat expectations and the company raised its dividend. Net income totaled $638.9 million, or $1.03 per share, up from $520.6 million, or 85 cents per share, last year. Adjusted EPS of 27 cents beat the FactSet consensus for 87 cents. Sales of $4.36 billion were up from $4.00 billion last year and ahead of the FactSet forecast for $4.22 billion. Sales for the North American retail segment, pet and global segments rose while convenience stores and foodservice fell, owing to increased at-home eating during the coronavirus pandemic. General Mills declared a quarterly dividend of 51 cents per share, a 4% increase, payable on Nov. 2 to shareholders of record as of Oct. 9. General Mills expects at-home demand to remain elevated due to COVID-19, but did not give fiscal 2021 guidance due to the uncertainty of the pandemic. Other General Mills brands include Yoplait yogurt, Cascadian Farms, Annie's and Green Giant. General Mills stock has gained 8.3% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 2.6% for the period.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Johnson & Johnson's stock rallies after Phase 3 trial launched for COVID-19 vaccine candidate
Shares of Johnson & Johnson rallied 2.2% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the health care and pharmaceutical company said it launched its pivotal global Phase 3 trial of its COVID-19 vaccine candidate, JNJ-78436735, being developed by its Janssen Pharmaceutical subsidiary. J&J said the initiation of the trial comes after its Phase 1/2a study demonstrated that the safety profile and immunogenicity after a single vaccination supported further development. The Phase 3 study is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial to evaluate the safety and efficacy of a single vaccine versus placebo, in up to 60,000 adults 18 years old and older, including "significant representation" of people over 60 years old. "With our vaccine candidate now in our global Phase 3 trial, we are one step closer to finding a solution for COVID-19," said Mathai Mammen, global head, Janssen Research & Development. "We used a highly scientific and evidence-based approach to select this vaccine candidate." J&J's stock has slipped 1.1% year to date through Tuesday, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has lost 4.4%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Gores Holdings stock soars after SPAC's deal to take United Wholesale Mortgage public
Shares of Gores Holdings IV Inc. shot up 16% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the special purpose acquisition company (SPAC), also known as a blank-check company, announced it will take United Wholesale Mortgage public in deal that values the mortgage lender at $16.1 billion. The deal includes $425 million of cash from Gores and a $500 million private placement, which is anchored by "top tier" institutional investors. After the deal, the company will operate under the United Wholesale Mortgage (UWM) name, and the stock will be listed on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol "UWMC." Michigan-based United Wholesale said it is the largest wholesale mortgage originator in the U.S., and the companies boast that UWM's valuation makes the deal the largest transaction by a SPAC to date. Gores's stock, which went public in March, has gained 7.9% over the past three months through Tuesday, while the Renaissance IPO ETF has run up 23.1% and the S&P 500 has gained 5.9%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Tesla's stock drops, Baird analyst sees lack of catalysts with Battery Day in the rearview
Shares of Tesla Inc. dropped 5.4% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the leading electric vehicle maker's much-anticipated Battery Day appeared to disappoint investors. Baird analyst Ben Kallo raised his price target to $360 from $332, but his new target is 15% below Tuesday's closing price of $424.23. Kallo reiterated his neutral rating, but said he believes the risk-versus-reward scenario for investors is skewed negatively. He said while Tesla is accomplishing "impressive" things, current valuation already reflects significant disruption potential. "With the Battery Day in the rearview, we think there is a lack of upcoming catalysts and are cautious about demand given the recessionary environment," Kallo wrote in a note to clients. "We are not downgrading to an underperform given our long-term constructive view of [Tesla], but we do think there will be an opportunity to buy shares lower." The stock has rocketed 407.1% year to date through Tuesday, while the S&P 500 has edged up 2.6%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Lion Electric to deliver 10 battery electric trucks to Amazon
Lion Electric said Wednesday it will deliver 10 battery electric trucks to Amazon.com Inc. , with the first two delivered this year. The e-commerce giant is expected to use Lion's trucks for transport within Amazon's network. Privately held Lion will provide training to Amazon drivers and establish a maintenance program for the trucks. The trucks will be made at Lion's facility in Canada, which has a capacity to manufacture 2,500 electric trucks per year.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



MarketWatch MarketPulse
Sep 23, 2020

Shopify announces data breach after two employees stole customer data
Shopify said late on Tuesday that two members of its support team were engaged in a scheme to obtain customer transactional records of merchants. "We immediately terminated these individuals' access to our Shopify network and referred the incident to law enforcement. We are currently working with the FBI and other international agencies in their investigation of these criminal acts. While we do not have evidence of the data being utilized, we are in the early stages of the investigation and will be updating affected merchants as relevant," said Shopify, which said that less than 200 merchants were impacted. The data includes basic contact information, such as email, name, and address, as well as order details, like products and services purchased, but not financial information such as credit-card information.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.



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