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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 22, 2021

Dow just bagged its first record close since Aug. 16 as Powell says U.S. might see 'maximum employment' in 2022
The Dow Jones Industrial Average registered its first record closing high in over two months, but the broader market faced headwinds from selling in information technology shares in an otherwise solid week of gains for the main three equity benchmarks. The Dow closed up 0.2% to reach 35,677, on a preliminary basis, marking the first all-time closing high since Aug. 16. The advance for the price-weighted blue-chip benchmark were supported in part by gains in American Express Corp. and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. . The record for the Dow also comes a day after the S&P 500 index registered its first closing high since Sept. 2. The broad-market index closed down 0.1% on Friday at around 4,544. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite Index ended down 0.8% at about 15,090, weighed by shares of Google-parent Alphabet Inc. and Facebook Inc. . Fed's Powell said the U.S. labor market might continue to improve so it reaches "maximum employment" next year, speaking at an event hosted by the Bank for International Settlements.

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
Oct 22, 2021

U.S. oil futures log a 9th straight weekly climb
Oil futures finished higher on Friday, with U.S. prices up tallying a ninth consecutive weekly climb --- the longest streak of weekly gains for front-month crude on record, based on data going back to April 1983, according to Dow Jones Market Data. Analysts attributed oil's price gains to easing travel restrictions, as well as a slow recovery in U.S. crude output and expectations for higher energy demand for the upcoming holiday season. West Texas Intermediate crude for December delivery rose $1.26, or 1.5%, to settle at $83.76 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. For the week, prices based on the front month rose 2.5%.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Gold futures settle higher, posting a gain for the week
Gold futures settled higher on Friday, with concerns surrounding rising inflation prompting prices to post a gain for the week. Gold prices, however, finished off the session's highest price levels after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Friday that it was "time to taper" the central bank's $120 billion in monthly asset purchases. December gold climbed by $14.40, or 0.8%, to settle at $1,796.30 an ounce. Prices based on the most-active contract climbed about 1.6% for the week, marking a second consecutive weekly gain, 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
Oct 22, 2021

Baker Hughes reports the first weekly decline in U.S. oil-drilling rigs in 7 weeks
Baker Hughes on Friday reported that the number of active U.S. rigs drilling for oil declined by two to 443 this week. The weekly decline followed six consecutive weeks of increases. The total active U.S. rig count, which includes those drilling for natural gas, also fell by one to stand at 542, according to Baker Hughes. December West Texas Intermediate crude continued to trade higher, up 93 cents, or 1.1%, at $83.43 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Amazon under pressure from fulfillment costs
Amazon.com Inc.'s price target was cut to $4,200 from $4,700 at Credit Suisse as fulfillment and shipping costs rise. Amazon has announced plans for 150,000 seasonal hires in addition to more than 150,000 other hires it has announced. "We assume that from a customer service perspective Amazon will expedite delivery/bear the incremental shipping cost," analysts wrote. "As we further anticipate global logistics headwinds do not abate until mid-22, our EBIT estimates for 2H21/22 decrease accordingly and reflect a scenario in which Amazon has spent roughly $53 billion in CapEx and further taken on incremental expenses without showing potential wallet share gains through greater service levels in the form of faster deliveries across a wider array of SKUs [stock-keeping units]." Credit Suisse rates Amazon stock outperform. Amazon is scheduled to report third-quarter earnings on Oct. 28. Amazon stock is up 2.9% for 2021 so far while the S&P 500 index has gained 20.9% 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
Oct 22, 2021

Stock market briefly takes a U-turn lower Friday as Tepper says market isn't a great investment now, Powell hints a rate hike
U.S. stock indexes were turning lower midday Friday, with the main benchmarks retreating from records to end an otherwise strong week of gains, as investors digested comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell. Some of the shift lower in sentiment intraday als was blamed on comments from hedge-fund luminary David Tepper, who said he didn't think stocks were "a great investment right here," in an interview with CNBC on Friday. "I just don't know how interest rates are going to behave next year... I don't think there's any great asset classes right now... I don't love stocks," he told the business network. The Dow Jones Industrial Average [ : DJIA] was up less than 0.1%, while the S&P 500 index was off 0.3% and the Nasdaq Composite Index was nearly 1% lower. Powell told the BIS that the job market could reach maximum employment next year, achieving one of the Fed's central mandates, which he said would meet one requirement for a rate hike.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Phunware stock surges over 1,000% early Friday as a Trump-linked SPAC heads for a 1,345% weekly gain
Shares of Phunware Inc. surged more than 1,000% early Friday, as a special-purpose acquisition company, or SPAC, called Digital World Acquisition Corp. , was revealed to be merging with an entity called Trump Media & Technology Group. Austin-based Phunware is an advertising startup that has been associated with former President Donald Trump's 2020 presidential campaign, and appeared to be getting a lift from the DWAC SPAC deal, which apparently represents the former president's latest attempt to launch a social-media platform. Meanwhile, shares of DWAC were up 190% on Friday, contributing to a 1,345% weekly gain for the entity. Trump announced that he expects to upend Silicon Valley via a new app called TRUTH Social, which will be a property of the newly formed social-media company Trump Media & Technology Group. Digital World closed up 356.8% on Thursday, marking the best first day of trading ever by a SPAC, according to Dow Jones Market Data. Meanwhile, Phunware's market value is just $116 million, FactSet data show, even with the surge in its stock on Friday.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Valkyrie bitcoin ETF sinks in Friday debut on Wall Street, but trailblazer ProShares fund still bouncy
Shares of the Valkyrie Bitcoin Strategy exchange-traded fund were trading flat to lower on Friday as the U.S's second ETF linked to bitcoin made its debut on Wall Street. The launch of the Valkyrie Bitcoin fund comes days after the ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF became the first U.S. ETF linked to bitcoin on Tuesday, in a watershed moment for the crypto sector. Both Valkyrie and ProShares's funds are futures based, which Gary Gensler, chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission has said provides better protections for individual investors. Gensler's statements about futures-pegged bitcoin ETFs, made in the summer have paved to way for fund providers to propose a parade of futures-linnked products. Futures are derivative financial contracts that provide investors exposure to price moves in an underlying asset. However, the value of futures contracts sometimes diverge from the underlying asset, which is one of a number of criticisms of a bitcoin futures ETF. The ProShares ETF were up 0.7% early Friday, however. Both Valkyrie and ProShares carry expense ratios of 0.95%, which means that investors annually pay $9.50 for every $1,000 invested in the fund.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Stocks open mostly lower after disappointing tech earning
Stocks opened mostly lower Friday, with the Nasdaq Composite leading the way to the downside after disappointing tech earnings.The Dow Jones Industrial Average shook off the weaker tone, rising 66 points, or 0.2%, to 35,669, while the S&P 500 was down less than 0.1% at 4,548 after closing at a record Thursday. The tech-heavy Nasdaq was off 0.3% at 15,164. Shares of chip maker Intel Corp. dropped 11% after reporting disappointing sales.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Chipotle to open its first drive-through Chipotlane in Canada
Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. said Friday that it will open its first Chipotlane in British Columbia on Monday. Chipotlanes are the fast-casual chain's drive-through pickup lanes for digital orders. Chipotle, which is focused on its digital business, has 280 Chipotlanes in the U.S. There are currently 25 Chipotle restaurants in Canada. Chipotle reported earnings that beat expectations on Thursday. Chipotle stock has gained 33% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 21.1% 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
Oct 22, 2021

BJ's Restaurants has cut items from its menu and limited dining room capacity due to staffing shortages
BJ's Restaurants Inc. Chief Executive Greg Levin said in a third-quarter earnings statement that staffing shortages have driven the company to shorten its menu, cut dining room capacity and cut hours in certain locations. "As a result, we finished the third quarter with comparable restaurant sales down 0.5%, compared to the same period in 2019," he said. "Looking forward, as our staffing levels improve, we expect sales to benefit as we seat more tables, expand back to pre-pandemic hours, and return all of our restaurants to full menus by early November." BJ's reported a net loss of $2.2 million, or 9 cents per share, after a loss of $6.6 million, or 30 cents per share, last year. Revenue of $282.2 million was up from $198.9 million last year. The FactSet consensus was for earnings of 8 cents per share and revenue of $292.3 million. Comparable restaurant sales grew 41.8%, below the 44.2% FactSet consensus. Comparable sales were down 0.5% compared with the the same period in 2019. BJ's plans to open eight restaurants in 2022. BJ's stock slipped 0.5% in Friday premarket trading, and is down 8.7% for the year to date. The S&P 500 index has gained 21.1% 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
Oct 22, 2021

Beyond Meat shares slide 14% after company issues revenue warning, citing range of factors including COVID
Beyond Meat Inc. shares slid 14% in premarket trade Friday, after the plant-based food company issued a revenue warning for the third quarter, citing a range of issues including the highly transmissible delta variant of the coronavirus. "The company also experienced a decrease in retail orders that persisted longer than expected from a Canadian distributor coinciding with the reopening of restaurants, expected incremental orders that did not materialize from a change in a distributor servicing one of the company's large customers, observed delays in distribution expansion and shelf resets believed to be driven by customer labor shortages, and incurred shortfalls at certain U.S. foodservice customers believed to be driven by the effects of the COVID-19 Delta variant," the company said in a statement. It now expects third-quarter revenue of about $106 million, down from prior guidance of $120 million to $140 million. Other issues that have hurt performance include severe weather and the loss of potable water for two weeks at a Pennsylvania facility and water damage to inventory at another. "These impacts were partially offset by accelerated orders from an international customer during the third quarter," said the statement. Beyond Meat is expecting to report third-quarter earnings on Nov. 10. Shares have fallen 13% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 21%.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Seagate tops earnings expectations as cloud data-center demand remains strong
Seagate Technology Holdings PLC delivered better-than-expected earnings Friday morning and issued a forecast for the current period that exceeded analyst expectations at the midpoint. The company reported fiscal first-quarter net income of $526 million, or $2.28 a share, up from $223 million, or 86 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. On an adjusted basis, Seagate earned $2.35 a share, up from 93 cents a year prior and ahead of the FactSet consensus, which called for $2.21 a share. Seagate's revenue increased to $3.12 billion from $2.31 billion, while analysts had been looking for $3.11 billion. The company benefited from "ongoing demand from cloud data-center customers and strength in the video and image applications markets," Chief Executive Dave Mosley said in a release. For the fiscal second quarter, the company expects $2.95 billion to $3.25 billion in revenue and $2.20 to $2.50 a share in adjusted earnings. Analysts were modeling $3.0 billion in revenue and $2.13 in adjusted earnings per share for the December quarter. Seagate shares have declined 1.1% over the past three months as the S&P 500 has added 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
Oct 22, 2021

Sonoco Belgian unit to raise prices to combat inflationary pressures
Sonoco-Alcore S.a.r.l., a Belgian unit of packaging company Sonoco Products Co. , said Friday it is raising priced on all tube and core grades sold in the EMEA region by 50 euros ($58.20) per ton, or 50 pounds in the U.K., due to continued inflationary pressures. The increase will effective for all shipments made on or after Nov. 1, the company said. "The new headline news is energy with the massive increases all industries are now seeing across Europe. Other cost areas still continue to rise in addition, and we remain very active in offsetting as much as we can to assist our customers. The speed and magnitude of the energy increase has simply left us with no option but to pass it on," said Karsten Kemmerling, division VP - sales & marketing EMEA. Sonoco shares were not yet active premarket, but are up 0.5% in the year through Thursday, while the S&P 500 has gained 21%.

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
Oct 22, 2021

North Face parent VF Corp. reports profit and revenue miss
VF Corp. shares dropped nearly 7% in Friday premarket trading after The North Face and Vans parent reported fiscal second-quarter earnings and revenue that missed expectations. Net income totaled $464.1 million, or $1.18 per share, up from $256.7 million, or 66 cents per share, last year. Adjusted EPS of $1.11 missed the FactSet consensus for $1.15. Revenue of $3.198 billion was up from $2.608 billion last year and below the FactSet consensus for $3.490 billion. VF Corp. says it has experienced "isolated product delays" due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with manufacturing constraints and port delays impacting its supply chain. Stores around the world are operating, though some stores in Asia remained shut at the end of the quarter. VF Corp. maintained its full-year guidance for revenue of about $12 billion and adjusted EPS of $3.20. The FactSet consensus is for revenue of $11.947 billion and EPS of $3.20. VFC stock has fallen 13.3% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 21.1% 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
Oct 22, 2021

23andMe buys telemedicine specialist Lemonaid Health
23andMe Holding Co. said Friday it agreed to pay $400 million for Lemonaid Health Inc., the on-demand platform for accessing medical care and pharmacy services, in a bid to add telemedicine and prescription drug delivery services. The purchase price includes 25% cash and 75% in shares of 23andMe Class A common stock. The company expects to close the deal by the end of the year. 23andMe CEO Anne Wojcicki said the company will combine its business of providing genetic profiles of consumers with giving patients and healthcare providers better information about health risks and treatments."Lemonaid Health's focus on the patient and its philosophy of delivering individualized care fits perfectly with our mission of empowering people to take control of their health," Wojcicki said. Shares of 23andMe are down 9.6% so far in 2021.

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
Oct 22, 2021

HCA Healthcare blows past earnings estimates as it books gain on sale of facilities, offers upbeat guidance
HCA Healthcare Inc. blew past earnings estimates for the third quarter on Friday, and offered guidance that was above consensus as the coronavirus pandemic caused a surge in demand for hospital care. The Nashville, Tenn.-based hospital operator said it had net income of $2.269 billion, or $7.00 per share, compared to $668 million, or $1.95 per diluted share, in the year -earlier period. Revenue rose to $15.276 billion from $13.311 billion. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of $4.06 on revenue of $14.476 billion. "During the third quarter we experienced the most intense surge yet of the pandemic, and our colleagues and physicians delivered record levels of patient care to meet the demand caused by the Delta variant," CEO Sam Hazen said in a statement. The results included a gain on sales of facilities of $1.047 billion, or $2.43 a share. Same-facility admissions rose 6.8% in the quarter from the year-earlier period, while same-facility emergency room visits jumped 31.2%. The company is now expecting full-year EPS to range from $17.20 to $17.80 and for revenue to range from $58.7 billion to $59.3 billion. The FactSet consensus is for EPS of $17.05 and $57.872 billion. Shares were up 1% premarket and have gained 58% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 21%.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Schlumberger stock falls after profit matches expectations but revenue misses
Shares of Schlumberger Ltd. slumped 0.9% in premarket trading Friday, after the oil services company reported a third-quarter profit that matched expectations but revenue rose missed, but provided an upbeat outlook oil and gas demand. The company swung to net income of $550 million, or 39 cents a share, from a loss of $82 million, or 6 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share more than doubled to 36 cents from 16 cents, compared with the FactSet consensus of 36 cents. Revenue grew 11.2% to $5.85 billion, below the FactSet consensus of $5.15 billion. Among business segment revenue, well construction topped expectations and reservoir performance matched, but digital and integration and production systems missed. "The industry macro fundamentals have visibly strengthened this year, particularly in recent weeks-with demand recovery, oil and gas commodity prices at recent highs, low inventory levels, and encouraging trends in pandemic containment efforts," said Chief Executive Olivier Le Peuch. The stock has soared 22.6% over the past three months through Thursday, while the VanEck Oil Services ETF has run up 16.1% and the S&P 500 has gained 4.2%.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Intel, Honeywell stock drops after earnings would cut Dow's price by about 70 points
Shares of Intel Corp. tumbled 10.3% in premarket trading Friday, making it by far the biggest loser among Dow Jones Industrial Average components, in the wake of disappointing third-quarter results. Since Intel's closed Thursday at $56.00 as the 25th-lowest price Dow component, and the Dow is a price-weighted index, the impact on the Dow's price is more muted than higher priced stocks. Intel's stock's implied premarket price decline would shave about 40 points off the Dow's price, while Dow futures gained 30 points, or 0.1%. Honeywell's stock is the next biggest Dow loser, falling 2.1% after reporting a third-quarter revenue miss. But with the stock closing Thursday at $224.52, the implied premarket price decline would cut about 30 points off the Dow's price.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Honeywell's stock drops after profit tops expectations but revenue misses amid 'tough' supply chain environment
Shares of Honeywell International Inc. slumped 3.4% in premarket trading Friday, after the aerospace and building materials company reported third-quarter profit that topped expectations but revenue that came up short, citing "tough challenges" in the supply chain. Net income rose to $1.27 billion, or $1.80 a share, from $758 million, or $1.07 a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share rose 29% to $2.02, above the FactSet consensus of $1.99. Sales grew 8.7% to $8.47 billion, below the FactSet consensus of $8.66 billion. Among the company's business segments, all saw sales rise from a year ago, but only performance materials and technologies topped expectations, while aerospace, building technologies and safety and productivity solutions were a bit shy. For 2021, the company raised its guidance range for adjusted EPS to $8.00 to $8.10 from $7.95 to $8.10, but cut its revenue guidance to $34.2 billion to $34.6 billion from $34.6 billion to $35.2 billion. The stock has declined 3.5% over the past three months through Thursday, while the S&P 500 has gained 4.2%.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Autoliv stock falls after profit falls more than 50% to miss expectations as supply shortages weighed on LVP
The U.S.-listed shares of Autoliv Inc. fell 0.6% in premarket trading Friday, after the Sweden-based auto safety systems maker reported third-quarter adjusted profit that was half of last year's and missed expectations, as shortages of semiconductor supplies and other components led to a 20% drop in light vehicle production (LVP). Net income fell to $60 million, or 68 cents a share, from $99 million, or $1.12 a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share dropped 50.7%, to 73 cents from $1.48, to miss the FactSet consensus of 81 cents. Sales declined 9.3% to $1.85 billion, just below the FactSet consensus of $1.87 billion. For 2021, the company expects sales growth of "around 11%," while the current FactSet consensus of $8.41 billion implies 13% growth. "The decline in LVP, unpredictable changes in customer call-offs and higher raw material costs resulted in reduced profitability despite significant cost control measures, including headcount reductions," said Chief Executive Mikael Bratt. The stock has gained 3.4% year to date through Thursday, while the S&P 500 has climbed 21.3%.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Coronavirus tally: Global cases of COVID-19 top 242.5 million and CDC approves expanded booster program
The global tally for the coronavirus-borne illness climbed above 242.5 million on Friday, while the death toll edged above 4.93 million, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University. The U.S. continues to lead the world with a total of 45.3 million cases and 733,218 deaths. The U.S. is averaging more than 1,500 deaths a day, according to a New York Times tracker, although cases and hospitalizations are declining. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday agreed to extend COVID-19 boosters to Americans who got the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccine and said anyone eligible for an extra dose can get a brand different to the one they got as primary dose, the Associated Press reported. The Food and Drug Administration had already authorized such an expansion of the nation's booster campaign on Wednesday, and it was also endorsed Thursday by a CDC advisory panel. CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky had the final word on who gets the extra doses. India is second by cases after the U.S. at 34.1 million and has suffered 453,042 deaths. Brazil has second highest death toll at 604,679 and 21.7 million cases. In Europe, Russia has the most fatalities at 224,369 deaths, followed by the U.K. at 139,562.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Facebook and other internet stocks under pressure after Snap gloom
Internet stocks were under pressure in premarket trading on Friday, dragged lower by Snap , after the owner of social media app Snapchat said privacy changes imposed by Apple were weighing on digital advertising and would hurt the holiday quarter to come. Shares of Snap fell 20% in premarket trading slumping after results late Thursday. That put the stock on track to open at a three-month low. Other companies that rely on digital ads were under pressure in premarket trading, including Facebook down more than 3%, with Etsy , Shopify, Stitch Fix and Pinterest all off by 1% or more.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Digital World Acquisition Corp., the SPAC buying Trump Media, jumps again
Digital World Acquisition Corp. , the special purpose acquisition company merging with the newly formed Trump Media & Technology Group, was flirting with $70 per share in early premarket trade, which would represent a rise of more than 50%. The SPAC jumped 357% to $45.40 on Thursday, following the announcement. At $70, DWAC would have a market capitalization of roughly $2 billion. The Digital World transaction values Trump Media at an initial $875 million, for a company which plans to roll out a beta version of a social-media platform next month, and subsequently produce "non-woke" news shows, entertainment and podcasts.

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
Oct 22, 2021

Flash eurozone composite and services PMI indexes hit six-month lows in October
The flash eurozone composite output purchasing managers index (PMI) to a six-month low in October of 54.3, from 56.2 in September, according to IHS Markit. The flash services PMI dropped to 54.7 from 56.4, also a six-month low. Any reading blow 50 indicates conditions are deteriorating. While those numbers were above 50, Markit noted a sharp slowing in business activity amid increasingly supply bottlenecks and ongoing concerns over COVID. "While the overall rate of economic growth remains above the long-run average for now, risks seem tilted to the downside for the near-term as the pandemic continues to disrupt economies and push prices higher," said Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit, in a news release.

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
Oct 21, 2021

S&P 500 closes at record as investors continue to applaud earnings
Stocks ended mostly higher Thursday, with the S&P 500 notching its first record close since Sept. 2 as investors continued to applaud generally upbeat corporate earnings. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the day down around 6 points, or less than 0.1%, near 35,603, while the S&P 500 advanced around 14 points, or 0.3%, to close near 4,550. The Nasdaq Composite gained around 94 points, or 0.6%, finishing near 15,216.

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
Oct 21, 2021

McDonald's chances of adding the McPlant to the nationwide menu are 'fairly high,' says BTIG
Analysts at BTIG say although McDonald's Corp. "claims" to be testing the McPlant in eight restaurants, they think there's a "fairly high" chance that the plant-based sandwich will rollout out nationwide in 2022. "We believe interest in adding a plant-based meat option to menus is accelerating domestically at quick-service operators," analysts led by Peter Saleh said. "We believe that 2022 will be a pivotal year for plant-based meat in the QSR segment with many brands introducing the product or increasing their offering to further differentiate themselves from competitors." Analysts cite plant-based options at other fast-food chains, like the Impossible Whopper at Restaurant Brands International Inc. chain, Burger King. "In our view, many of the brands that are testing the offering will launch the product systemwide in effort to leverage national advertising to determine the true sales potential of the products." BTIG estimates that putting the McPlant on the menus at 13,000 McDonald's locations could add $200 million in revenue for Beyond Meat Inc. Like Credit Suisse analysts, BTIG think the eight test restaurants were chosen to determine the reception among a broad group of customers. BTIG rates Beyond Meat stock neutral, saying that while the company has strong brand awareness and consumers are adding plant-based meat alternatives to their diets, competition and weakness in the foodservice channel are hurting the business with prolonged COVID-19 disruption stalling a rebound as restaurants emphasize efficiency in the kitchen. Beyond Meat shares have fallen 13.7% for the year to date. McDonald's stock is up 12.6%. And the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 16% 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
Oct 21, 2021

U.S. oil futures mark first loss in 6 sessions
Oil futures settled lower on Thursday, with U.S. prices down for the first time in six sessions, a day after the front-month contract settled at the highest since October 2014. Prices got a boost Wednesday as the Energy Information Administration reported a weekly decline in U.S. crude inventories --- the first in four weeks. On its first full trading day as a front-month contract, West Texas Intermediate crude for December delivery fell 92 cents, or 1.1%, to settle at $82.50 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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
Oct 21, 2021

Gold futures end lower after two-session decline
Gold futures ended with a loss on Thursday, easing back after posting gains in each of the last two trading sessions. The precious metal "appears stuck in 'no man's land', battling rising yields on the short-end of the curve" as Federal Reserve members try to push back rate hike expectations, said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda. "Bullion continues to struggle to recapture the $1,800 level," he said. December gold declined by $3, or 0.2%, to settle at $1,781.90 an ounce.

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
Oct 21, 2021

Enfusion stock opens 18% above IPO price to value investment management software company at $2.3 billion
Enfusion Inc. was well received on its Wall Street debut, as the Chicago-based investment management software company's stock opened 17.6% above its IPO price. The company raised $260.5 million as it sold 15.32 million Class A shares in its initial public offering, which the company said overnight priced at $17 a share, at the top of the expected range of between $15 and $17 a share. Selling shareholders raised $58.3 million as they sold 3.43 million shares in the IPO. The stock's first trade on the NYSE was at $20.00 at 11:16 a.m. Eastern for about 2.3 million shares. With a total of about 113.05 million Class A and Class B shares outstanding expected after the IPO, the stock's first trade values the company at about $2.26 billion. The stock has pared some gains since the open to recently trade up 17.1% at $19.90. The company debuted on a day that the Renaissance IPO ETF rose 0.8% in midday trading while the S&P 500 slipped 0.1%.

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Oct 21, 2021

P10 opens slightly above, then seesaws around the IPO price
P10 Inc. received a somewhat lackluster reception on its public debut, as the Texas-based alternative asset management company's stock opened on the NYSE just 0.8% above the $12 IPO price, the seesawed around that price. The company raised $138.0 million as it sold 11.5 million Class A shares in its initial public offering, which the company said overnight priced at $12 a share, or below the expected range of between $14 and $16 a share. Selling shareholders sold raised $102.0 million as they sold 8.5 million shares in the IPO. The stock's first NYSE trade was at $12.10 at 11:23 a.m. Eastern for about 1.3 million shares. With a total of about 117.16 million Class A and Class B shares outstanding expected after the IPO, the stock's first trade values the company at about $1.42 billion. The stock has traded within a range of $12.70 to $11.27 since the open, and was recently changing hands up 0.1% at $12.01. The company debuted on a day that the Renaissance IPO ETF was rising 0.7% in midday trading while the S&P 500 slipped 0.1%.

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Oct 21, 2021

Vita Coco stock opens slightly above IPO price, valuing coconut water company at about $853 million
Investors cheered Vita Coco Co. on its public debut Thursday, as the New York-based coconut water and other beverages company's stock opened 2.5% above its IPO price, and then extended gains. The company raised $37.5 million as it sold 2.5 million shares in its initial public offering, which the company said overnight priced at $15 a share, or below the expected range of between $18 and $21 a share. Selling shareholders sold 9.0 million shares to raise $135.0 million. The stock's first trade on the Nasdaq was at $15.37 at 11:05 a.m. Eastern for about 1.1 million shares. With 55.50 million shares outstanding expected after the IPO, the stock's first trade values the company at about $853.0 million. The stock has extended gains to recently trade up 7.3% at $16.10. Vita Coco went public on a day that the Renaissance IPO ETF rallied 1.0% in morning trading while the S&P 500 slipped 0.1%.

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Oct 21, 2021

Portillo's stock debuts with a 30% gain after Chicago street food company raises $405.4 million in IPO
Portillo's Inc. received a nice ovation in its public debut Thursday, as the Chicago street food company's stock opened 30% above its IPO price, and then rose further. The company raised $405.4 million as it sold 20.27 million shares in its initial public offering, which the company said overnight priced at $20 a share, or at the top of the expected range of between $17 and $20 a share. The stock's first trade on the Nasdaq was at $26.00 at 10:59 a.m. ET for 2.46 million shares. It has edged higher since to trade up 32.6% at $26.52, representing a market capitalization of about $1.9 billion, according to FactSet. The company's upbeat debut came on a day of relatively strong investor interest in IPOs, as the Renaissance IPO ETF surged 1.2% in morning trading while the S&P 500 slipped 0.1%.

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Oct 21, 2021

WeWork shares rise in trading debut after SPAC merger closes
WeWork Inc. moved into positive territory on Thursday, as shares climbed 7.9% to $11.20 in their first day of public trading. The company has completed its previously announced merger with the special purpose acquisition company BowX Acquisition Corp. SoftBank, which has taken an $8.2 billion write-down for its investment in the company, currently holds a 56% equity stake in WeWork. As announced in March, the merger between BowX and WeWork valued the company at about $9 billion and provided $1.3 billion of cash to WeWork, which rents out office space to gig workers. WeWork executive chairman Marcelo Claure said SoftBank "is proud to support WeWork" and that the company "is leading one of the biggest disruptions in commercial real estate with a workspace solution that has never been more in demand."

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Oct 21, 2021

Walgreens expanding its Mental Health First Aid training to 27,000 pharmacists
Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. said Thursday that it will begin the process of expanding its Mental Health First Aid training to all of its pharmacists, with priority given to those located in places most impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The company is also partnering with LifeWorks to offer services and behavioral health counseling to its team members. And Walgreens is expanding its mental health programs and services at Boots. Walgreens announced its healthcare strategy during its investor event last week, with multibillion-dollar investments in Walgreens Health planned. Walgreens stock has gained 23% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index has gained 20.8% for the period.

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Oct 21, 2021

U.S. Postal Service enacts tobacco, marijuana and hemp e-cigarette limitations
The U.S. Postal Service on Thursday restricted the mailing of electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), or e-cigarettes to consumers. The USPS's ban included products containing THC and hemp/CBD products in electronic delivery systems. Adults can make non-commercial shipments, but are limited to 10 shipments in a 30-day period. Hemp and CBD products that are not in the form of electronic delivery systems - such as vape pens - may be mailed if they contain less than 0.3% of THC. The rules were passed in reaction to the Preventing Online Sales of E-Cigarettes to Children Act (POSECCA) OK'd by Congress in 2020. POSECCA required online e-cigarette retailers to verify the age of customers for all purchases, required an adult with ID to be present for delivery, and required label shipping packages to show they contain tobacco products and comply with all state and local tobacco tax requirements.

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Oct 21, 2021

Denny's has been able to bring back round-the-clock service despite labor issues, Truist says
Denny's Corp. was upgraded to buy from hold at Truist Securities, with analysts growing more upbeat as the restaurant chain restores 24/7 dining service and growing strength in key markets, California, Texas and Florida. Truist raised its price target to $18 from $17. "As of 10/18, we found that 24-hour operations are offered at 52% of Denny's stores on Saturdays, up from 44% at the end of 2Q21, and the percent open midnight or later increased to 78% from 68%," analysts said. "While still far from having all stores open 24/7, which the vast majority were pre-COVID, we view the improvement as encouraging, given still persistent staffing challenges." Analysts also think that Denny's franchised business creates a margin opportunity as franchisors raise price to manage inflation. Denny's stock is up 6.5% in Thursday trading, and up 6% for the year to date. The S&P 500 index has gained 20.8% for 2021 so far.

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Oct 21, 2021

EIA reports a weekly climb of 92 billion cubic feet in natural-gas supplies
The U.S. Energy Information Administration reported on Thursday that domestic supplies of natural gas rose by 92 billion cubic feet for the week ended Oct. 15. That was a bit larger than the average increase of 88 billion cubic feet forecast by analysts polled by S&P Global Platts. Total stocks now stand at 3.461 trillion cubic feet, down 458 billion cubic feet from a year ago and 151 billion cubic feet below the five-year average, the government said. Following the data, November natural gas extended its decline, trading down 11.5 cents, or 2.2%, at $5.062 per million British thermal units. Prices were at $5.107 shortly before the data.

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Oct 21, 2021

Existing-home sales improve in September, eating up available inventory
Existing-home sales rose 7% on a monthly basis in September, reaching a seasonally-adjusted, annual rate of 6.29 million, the National Association of Realtors said Thursday. Compared to a year ago, though, sales were down roughly 2%. The increase in sales was the result of improved inventory in recent months, which gave buyers more options to choose from and allowed more people to lock in purchases. However, inventory dropped nearly 1% from the previous month as of the end of September, and was down 13% from a year ago.

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Oct 21, 2021

U.S. leading indicators rises smaller 0.2% in September
The U.S. leading economic index grew a softer 0.2% in September and pointed toward somewhat slower growth, the Conference Board said Thursday."The U.S. LEI rose again in September, though at a slower rate, suggesting the economy remains on a more moderate growth trajectory compared to the first half of the year," said Ataman Ozyildirim, director of business cycles research at the board. "The delta variant, rising inflation fears, and supply chain disruptions are all creating headwinds for the US economy." The index had increased 0.8% in August and 0.9% in July. The LEI is a weighted gauge of 10 indicators designed to signal business-cycle peaks and valleys.

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Oct 21, 2021

Stocks open slightly lower after push toward record highs
Major U.S. stock indexes opened with small losses Thursday, pausing after the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 ended the previous session less than 0.1% away from record finishes. The Dow fell 63 points, or 0.2%, to 15,547. Losses for the blue-chip gauge were led by International Business Machines Corp., down 6%, after falling short on revenues. The S&P 500 was down 0.1% at 4,530.30, while the Nasdaq Composite shed 0.1% to trade at 15,106.87.

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Oct 21, 2021

Macy's e-commerce business could have an enterprise value of $11.5 billion, Cowen says
Macy's Inc.'s e-commerce platform could have an enterprise value of $11.5 billion, according to estimates from Cowen analysts. Macy's is facing a showdown with activist investors Jana Partners LLC, according to The Wall Street Journal, who are encouraging the department store retailer to separate its e-commerce from its bricks-and-mortar business. Cowen analysts say that, with an $11.5 billion enterprise value, Macy's e-commerce unit could be worth as much as $40 per share. Macy's stock will open Thursday at $26.35. "We believe a spinoff could be possible, and management and the board have and are analyzing this possibility along with other value generating initiatives," said Cowen analysts. "However, we acknowledge that there have not been many successful long-term proof points, and there are significant risks to destabilizing the business and slowing momentum." Cowen rates Macy's stock outperform with a $32 price target, up from $27. Macy's shares have rallied 134.2% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index has gained 20.8% for the period.

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Oct 21, 2021

Enfusion valued at $1.9 billion as IPO priced at top of expected range
Enfusion Inc. is set for its public debut Thursday, as the Chicago-based investment management software company's initial public offering priced overnight at $17 a share, at the top of the expected range of between $15 and $17 a share. The company sold 15.32 million Class A shares in the IPO to raise $260.5 million and selling shareholders sold 3.43 million shares to raise $58.3 million. With a total of 113.05 million Class A and Class B shares outstanding expected after the IPO, the pricing would value the company at $1.92 billion. The stock is expected to begin trading on the NYSE some time after the open, under the ticker symbol "ENFN." The company is going public at a time the Renaissance IPO ETF has climbed 7.8% over the past three months while the S&P 500 has tacked on 4.1%.

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Oct 21, 2021

P10 to go public after IPO prices below the expected range, valuing company at $1.4 billion
P10 Inc. is all set to go public Thursday, as the Texas-based alternative asset management company's initial public offering priced overnight at $12 a share, below the expected range of between $14 and $16 a share. The company sold 11.5 million Class A shares in the IPO to raise $138.0 million, while selling shareholders 8.5 million shares to raise $102.0 million. With a total of 117.16 million Class A and Class B shares outstanding expected after the IPO, the pricing values the company at about $1.41 billion. The stock is expected to start trading on the NYSE some time after the open under the ticker symbol "PX." The company is going public at a time that the Renaissance IPO ETF has rallied 7.8% over the past three months while the S&P 500 has gained 4.1%.

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Oct 21, 2021

Blackstone shares rise in pre-market after earnings beat estimates
Blackstone Inc. shares rose 3.4% in pre-market trades on Thursday after the private-equity firm said its third-quarter net income rose to $1.4 billion, or $1.94 a share, from $794.7 million, or $1.13 a share, in the year-ago quarter. Distributable earnings increased to $1.64 billion, or $1.28 a share, from $772.1 million, or 63 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Analysts expected Blackstone to earn 89 cents a share, according to a survey by FactSet. Total assets under management rose 25% to $730.7 billion. Blackstone will pay a $1.09 a share dividend, double from 54 cents a share a year ago. Prior to Thursday's gains, Blackstone shares are up 98.6% so far this year, outpacing a gain of 20.8% by the S&P 500.

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Oct 21, 2021

Facebook has 'not been fully forthcoming' around 'cross-check' program for high-profile users, its oversight board says
Facebook Inc.'s Oversight Board said Thursday that the social-media company "not been fully forthcoming" when it comes to providing the board with information about its "cross-check" system, through which the company is said to have held higher-profile users to different standards when it comes to enforcement of Facebook rules. Following a Wall Street Journal investigation into the cross-check system, Facebook's Oversight Board began looking into the program and found that Facebook sometimes "failed to provide relevant information." In other cases the company provided incomplete information. The Oversight Board said in a Thursday blog post that it has accepted a request from Facebook to review the cross-check system and provide recommendations on potential changes. "Specifically, Facebook requested guidance on, among other things: how to ensure fairness and objectivity in cross-check reviews, taking into account context; how to govern cross-check and promote transparency; and the criteria it uses to determine who is included in cross-check and how to ensure this is equitable," according to the blog post. Shares of Facebook have gained 25% so far this year as the S&P 500 has risen 21%.

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Oct 21, 2021

Facebook has 'not been fully forthcoming' around 'crosscheck' program for high-profile users, oversight board says
Facebook Inc.'s oversight board said Thursday that the social-media company has "not been fully forthcoming" when it comes to providing the board with information about its "crosscheck" system, through which the company is said to have held higher-profile users to different standards when it comes to enforcement of Facebook rules. Following a Wall Street Journal investigation into the cross-check system, Facebook's oversight board began looking into the program and found that Facebook sometimes "failed to provide relevant information." In other cases the company provided incomplete information. The oversight body said in a Thursday blog post that it has accepted a request from Facebook to review the crosscheck system and provide recommendations on potential changes. "Specifically, Facebook requested guidance on, among other things: how to ensure fairness and objectivity in cross-check reviews, taking into account context; how to govern cross-check and promote transparency; and the criteria it uses to determine who is included in cross-check and how to ensure this is equitable," according to the blog post. Shares of Facebook have gained 25% so far this year as the S&P 500 has risen 21%.

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Oct 21, 2021

Walmart extends delivery hours for the holidays, expands alcohol delivery and pickup
Walmart Inc. announced on its website that it's extending delivery times by two hours, so orders will now arrive as late as 10 p.m. local time. With the change, customers who place orders by 6 p.m. can receive their packages using same-day or next-day delivery. Through the Spark Driver app, there will also be additional windows for delivery. It will still cost between $7.95 and $9.95 for one-time delivery, with an extra $10 fee for two-hour delivery. Walmart members get unlimited free deliveries. The retail giant is also making the window of time to amend orders wider, has added the number of items eligible for delivery, and is expanding the number of stores that will make alcohol available for pickup and delivery. Walmart will be closed on Thanksgiving day. Walmart stock is up 1.3% for the year to date while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 16.4% for the period.

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Oct 21, 2021

Freeport-McMoRan's stock falls after profit rises above expectations but revenue comes up a bit shy
Shares of Freeport-McMoRan Inc. fell 1.8% in premarket trading Thursday, after the mining company reported third-quarter net profit that soared more than four-fold, while revenue came up short of expectations, as realized copper prices soared but gold prices fell. Net income climbed to $1.40 billion, or 94 cents a share, from $329 million, or 22 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share came to 89 cents, above the FactSet consensus of 81 cents. Revenue grew 58.0% to $6.08 billion, just short of the FactSet consensus of $6.13 billion, as cost of sales increased 23.8% to $3.55 billion. The average realized price per pound of copper rose 39.5% to $4.20, the average realized price per ounce for gold fell 7.6% to $1.76 billion and the average realized price per pound for molybdenum jumped 101.6% to $18.61. The stock has rallied 12.4% over the past three months, while the S&P 500 has gained 4.1%.

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Oct 21, 2021

IBM stock selloff would cut the Dow's price by about 50 points
Shares of International Business Machines Corp. dove 5.4% in premarket trading Thursday, in the wake of the technology company's disappointing third-quarter results, and was by far the biggest drag on the Dow Jones Industrial Average ahead of the open. The implied price decline in IBM's stock would shave about 51 points off the Dow's price, while Dow futures shed 98 points or 0.3%, with 23 of 30 components trading lower. The next biggest Dow decliner in the premarket was Caterpillar Inc.'s stock, which slipped 1.1% and implied a 15-point weight on the Dow's price. The biggest gainer was Dow Inc.'s stock , which rose 1.5%, and would add about 6 points to the Dow's price, after the chemical and specialty materials company beat third-quarter profit and revenue forecasts.

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Oct 21, 2021

Tractor Supply reports earnings beat, raises guidance
Tractor Supply Co. reported third-quarter net income of $224.4 million, or $1.95 per share, up from $190.6 million, or $1.62 per share, last year. Sales of $3.018 billion were up from $2.607 billion last year. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of $1.66 and sales of $2.861 billion. Comparable sales growth of 13.1% beat the FactSet consensus for 7% growth. "Despite unprecedented pressures across our supply chain, we are raising our outlook for fiscal 2021 and are on track for a record year of sales and earnings," said Chief Executive Hal Lawton in a statement. For 2021, Tractor Supply now expects sales of $12.6 billion, up from previous guidance for $12.1 billion to $12.3 billion. Comp store sales are expected to grow 16%, up from the previous outlook for growth of 11% to 13%. And EPS is now expected to be $8.40 to $8.50, up from $7.70 to $8.00 previously. The FactSet consensus is for sales of $12.263 billion, comp store sales growth of 13.4% and EPS of $8.01. Tractor Supply stock rose 1.4% in Thursday premarket trading, and is up 43.9% for the year to date. The S&P 500 index is up 20.*% for 2021 so far.

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Oct 21, 2021

Crocs says it's on track to meet its goals despite supply chain disruptions
Crocs Inc. stock jumped 7.8% in Thursday premarket trading after the shoe company reported third-quarter earnings and revenue that beat expectations. Net income totaled $153.5 million, or $2.42 per share, up from $61.9 million, or 91 cents per share last year. Adjusted EPS of $2.47 beat the FactSet consensus of $1.87. Revenue totaled $625.9 million, up from $361.7 million last year and also ahead of the FactSet consensus for $606.8 million. Crocs says that it was impacted by factory closures in Vietnam due to COVID-19. Still, the company says it's on track to achieve both long- and short-term goals. For full year 2021, Crocs expects revenue to increase between 62% and 65% from $1.386 billion in 2020. The FactSet consensus is for revenue of $2.316 billion, implying a 67.1% increase. For 2022, Crocs forecasts revenue growth of 20% compared to 2021. Crocs stock has soared 116.9% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index has gained 20.8% for the period.

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Oct 21, 2021

AutoNation shares jump 2.6% premarket as earnings blow past estimates amid strong demand for cars
AutoNation Inc. shares jumped 2.6% in premarket trade Thursday, after the car retailer blew past estimates for the third quarter as net income roughly doubled from a year ago. Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based AutoNation posted net income of $361.7 million, or $5.12 a share, for the quarter, up from $182.6 million, or $2.05 a share, in the year-earlier period. Revenue rose to $6.379 billion from $5.405 billion. The FactSet consensus was for EPS of $4.20 and revenue of $6.291 billion. "During the quarter, consumer demand continued to outpace supply, driven by consumer desire for personal transportation and ongoing manufacturing supply chain disruptions," the company said in a statement. "New vehicle inventory remains at historically low levels, which combined with strong execution, has supported record profitability." CEO Mike Jackson said they expect the pent-up demand to support sales for the foreseeable future. New vehicle revenue was flat compared to the prior year and down 3% compared to the third quarter of 2019, before the outbreak of the pandemic. Used vehicle revenue rose 53% from a year ago and was up 67% compared to the third quarter of 2019. Shares have gained 67.6% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 21%.

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Oct 21, 2021

American Airlines stock rises after a narrower-than-expected loss, as revenue nearly tripled
Shares of American Airlines Group Inc. rose 0.8% in premarket trading Thursday, after the air carrier reported a narrower-than-expected third-quarter loss on revenue that nearly tripled, while load factor came up short. The air carrier swung to net income of $169 million, or 25 cents a share, from a loss of $2.40 billion, or $4.71 a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, which would include benefits from government payroll support programs, the adjusted per-share loss came to 99 cents, beating the FactSet loss consensus of $1.04. Total revenue grew 182.7% to $8.97 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $8.92 billion, as passenger revenue jumped 213.3% to $7.96 billion. Load factor improved to 78.7% from 58.9% but missed the FactSet consensus of 80.9%. The company said it ended the quarter with about $18 billion of available liquidity. The company said it expects fourth-quarter revenue to be down about 20% from the same period in 2019, while the current FactSet revenue consensus of $9.30 billion implies a 17.8% decline. The stock has dropped 8.8% over the past three months through Wednesday, while the U.S. Global Jets ETF has slipped 1.8% and the S&P 500 has gained 4.1%.

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Oct 21, 2021

Dollar jumps against lira after surprisingly large Turkish rate cut
The dollar surged against the Turkish lira on Thursday after a surprising large rate cut. The Central Bank of the Republic of Turkey cut interest rates to 16% from 18%, more than the 0.5 point to 1 point cut markets anticipated. The dollar climbed to 9.3095 lira from 9.2133 lira on Wednesday.

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Oct 21, 2021

Quest Diagnostics net income falls; hikes 2021 outlook
Quest Diagnostics Inc. said Thursday its third-quarter net income fell to $505 million, or $4.02 a share, from $568 million, or $4.14 a share in the year-ago quarter. Adjusted earnings fell to $3.96 a share from $4.31 a share. Revenue at the medical testing company dropped to $2.774 billion from $2.786 billion. Analysts expected the company to earn $2.88 a share on revenue of $2.452 billion, according to a FactSet survey. Quest Diagnostics said it's lifting its 2021 profit target to a range of $13.50 to $13.90 a share, from its previous guidance of $11.65 to $12.35 share because of higher than expected COVID-19 testing volume. Analysts expected the company to earn $12.12 a share in 2021. Shares of Quest Diagnostics rose 3% in pre-market trades. As of Wednesday's close, the stock is up 23.2% so far this year, compared to a rise of 20.8% by the S&P 500.

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Oct 21, 2021

Pfizer and BioNTech say Phase 3 trial found booster dose of COVID vaccine had 95.6% efficacy against disease
Pfizer Inc. and German partner BioNTech SE said Thursday a late-stage trial of a 30 mg booster dose of their COVID-19 vaccine showed efficacy of 95.6% compared with those who received a placebo. The companies said the Phase 3 trial involved more than 10,000 people aged 16 and older, who had already received the primary two-dose series, and found the booster restored vaccine protection against COVID to the high levels achieved after the second dose. The booster was found to be safe. "These important data add to the body of evidence suggesting that a booster dose of our vaccine can help protect a broad population of people from this virus and its variants," said Ugur Sahin, M.D., CEO and Co-Founder of BioNTech, in a joint statement with Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla. The companies are planning to submit the data to the Food and Drug Administration, the European Medicines Agency and other regulators around the world. Pfizer shares jumped about 1% premarket, while BioNTech was up 1.8%. Pfizer shares have gained 16% in the year to date, while BioNTech has gained 230.5%. The SPDR S&P Biotech ETF has fallen 12% and the S&P 500 has gained 21%.

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Oct 21, 2021

Southwest results beat expectations, sees 'operational challenges' in October costing $75 million in revenue
Southwest Airlines Co. reported Thursday a narrower-than-expected third-quarter loss as passenger revenue nearly tripled, as overall demand remained "quite strong" despite a deceleration in traffic in August and September as a result of surging COVID-19 cases. The air carrier's stock was little changed in premarket trading. The company swung to net income of $446 million, or 73 cents a share, from a loss of $1.16 billion, or $1.96 a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding non-recurring items, such as $763 million in benefits related to the Payroll Support Program, adjusted per-share losses came to 23 cents, compared with the FactSet loss consensus of 27 cents. Total revenue rose 161.0% to $4.68 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $4.58 billion, as passenger revenue grew 190.7% to $4.23 billion. Load factor improved to 80.7% from 44.9% but came up shy of expectations of 82.1%. For October, revenue and booking trends continue to improve, but the company sees negative impacts of $40 million from the delta variant and of $75 million as a result of flight cancellations from operational challenges. The stock has lost 6.9% over the past three months, while the U.S. Global Jets ETF has slipped 1.8% and the S&P 500 has gained 4.1%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 21, 2021

SPAC planning merger with Trump Media jumps in premarket trade
Digital World Acquisition Corp. jumped 44%, and its A-class shares gained 30%, after announcing a plan to merge with Trump Media & Technology Group, which aims to launch a social-media platform backed by former President Donald Trump. The transaction values the Trump media group at an enterprise value of $875 million, the company said. What's called Truth Social is aiming for a beta launch in November, and Trump Media & Technology also is planning to launch "non-woke" entertainment programming, news and podcasts.

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Oct 21, 2021

Coronavirus tally: Global cases of COVID-19 top 242 million and FDA backs Moderna, J&J boosters and mix-and-match
The global tally for the coronavirus-borne illness climbed above 242 million on Wednesday, while the death toll edged above 4.92 million, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University. The U.S. continues to lead the world with a total of 45.2 million cases and 731,265 deaths. The U.S. is averaging more than 1,500 deaths a day, according to a New York Times tracker, although cases and hospitalizations are declining. U.S. regulators on Wednesday signed off on extending COVID-19 boosters to Americans who got the Moderna or Johnson & Johnson vaccine and said anyone eligible for an extra dose can get a brand different from the one they received initially, the Associated Press reported.The agency's decisions mark a big step toward expanding the U.S. booster campaign, which began with extra doses of the Pfizer vaccine last month. But before more people roll up their sleeves, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will consult an expert panel Thursday before finalizing official recommendations for who should get boosters and when. India is second by cases after the U.S. at 34.1 million and has suffered 452,811 deaths. Brazil has second highest death toll at 604,228 and 21.7 million cases. In Europe, Russia has the most fatalities at 223,331 deaths, followed by the U.K. at 139,444.

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Oct 21, 2021

Dow's stock gains as profit and revenue rise above forecasts, as local price jump
Shares of Dow Inc. edged up 0.2% in premarket trading Thursday, after the chemicals and specialty materials company reported third-quarter profit and revenue that rose above Wall Street forecasts, amid big jumps in local prices due to tight supply and demand dynamics. The company swung to net income of $1.68 billion, or $2.23 a share, from a loss of $25 million, or 4 cents a share, in the same period a year ago. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share rose to $2.75 from 50 cents, beating the FactSet consensus of $2.56. Sales surged 52.8% to $14.84 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $14.33 billion. Packaging and specialty plastics sales grew 69.5% to $7.74 billion to beat the FactSet consensus of $7.25 billion, as local price increased 63%; industrial intermediates and infrastructure sales rose 46.5% to $4.48 billion vs. expectations of $4.40 billion, as local price increased 49%; performance materials and coatings sales rose 26.2% to $2.53 billion to top expectations of $2.49 billion, as local price increased 23%. "e continue to see robust end-market demand that is expected to extend into 2022, coupled with near-term logistics constraints and low inventory levels across our value chains," said Chief Executive Jim Fitterling. The stock has gained 7.9% year to date through Wednesday, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has advanced 16.4%.

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Oct 20, 2021

Dow, S&P 500 end higher but narrowly miss closing highs as Fed's Beige Book shows inflation pressures remain
The S&P 500 index and Dow industrials closed higher on Wednesday, barely missing a finish at record closing highs as investors parsed the Federal Reserve's latest Beige Book showing the U.S. economy is growing at a modest to moderate pace, but remains under pressure from inflation and labor shortages. Strong third quarter corporate earnings are helping investors overcome some doubts about the impact of the coronavirus delta variant, supply-chain disruptions and the Federal Reserve's likely move to start withdrawing some of its easy-money policies. The Dow Jones Industrial Average close 0.4% higher at 35,609, missing its Aug. 16 closing high at 35,625.40. The S&P 500 index closed up 0.4% to end at around 4,536, coming within a hair's breadth of its Sept. 2 closing high at 4,536.95. The Nasdaq Composite Index , however, ended down slightly, less than 0.1% to end at about 15,121, ending its win streak at five straight sessions. Investors were focused on results from electric-vehicle maker Tesla Inc. , which rolled out after Wednesday's close. Meanwhile, the Fed's latest Beige Book survey of economic conditions released Wednesday pointed to a U.S. economy that still is growing at a solid pace, but labor shortages and supply-chain bottlenecks that have been restraining growth and triggering higher inflation.

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Oct 20, 2021

Citizens net income up 69% as ROTCE rises
Citizens Financial Group Inc. said Wednesday its third-quarter net income rose to $530 million, or $1.18 a share, from $314 million, or 68 cents a share, in the year-ago quarter. Adjusted earnings rose to $1.22 a share from 73 cents a share. Revenue fell to $1.66 billion from $1.75 billion. Analysts expected the regional bank to earn $1.16 a share on revenue of $1.64 billion, according to data from FactSet. The company's adjusted return on total capital employed rose to 14.2% from 9% -- a measure that's been a focus of CEO Bruce Van Saun. Shares of Citizens are up 3.4%. Prior to Wednesday's gains, the shares had gained 37.3% so far this year, compared to an increase of 41.8% by the KBW Nasdaq Bank Index .

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Oct 20, 2021

Oil futures finish higher after an unexpected weekly fall in U.S. crude inventories
Oil futures settled higher on Wednesday after the Energy Information Administration reported a weekly decline of 400,000 barrels in U.S. crude inventories, defying some expectations for a weekly climb. The crude market is coming out of an "overbought situation" and may see prices consolidate, before grinding higher, said Tariq Zahir, managing member at Tyche Capital Advisors. He also said he wouldn't be surprised to see the Biden administration try and pressure the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to produce more oil or see renewed talk of a release of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, amid efforts to "try and halt the recent upward movement in crude prices." On its expiration day, West Texas Intermediate crude for November delivery rose 91 cents, or 1.1%, to end at $83.87 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the highest finish for a front-month contract since Oct. 13, 2014, according to FactSet data. December WTI crude , now the front-month contract, added 98 cents, or 1.2%, to settle at $83.42.

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Oct 20, 2021

Gold futures post back-to-back session gains
Gold futures rose on Wednesday, settling higher for a second straight session. "Inflation concerns are supporting gold prices," said Chintan Karnani, director of research at Insignia Consultants. The yellow metal is still trading in the $1,750 to $1,800 range, but it will break free from that range, as physical demand is very high in Asia, he said. In the short term, however, gold has to show signs of trading over $1,800 for prices to rally, said Karnani. December gold climbed by $14.40, or 0.8%, to settle at $1,784.90 an ounce. After the release of the Federal Reserve's Beige Book report, prices traded at $1,786.40 in electronic trading.

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Oct 20, 2021

Private-equity firm Blackstone to acquire majority stake in Spanx, create all-female board
Blackstone Inc. said Wednesday it has agreed to acquire a majority stake in Spanx Inc., the womenswear brand founded by Sara Blakely in 2000, in a deal that values the brand at $1.2 billion. Blakely will retain a "significant equity stake" in the company, and will continue to oversee daily operations and become executive chairwoman once the deal closes. The deal "will enable SPANX to accelerate its already rapid digital transformation and strong online presence in the e-commerce channel, expand its global footprint, and fuel its commitment to creating innovative, ground-breaking products for its customers across even more categories," the companies said in a joint statement. The companies are planning to create an all-female board for the company. Blakely started the company by inventing the first Spanx undergarment in her own apartment, at a time when she was earning a living selling fax machines door to door. Blackstone shares were slightly higher Wednesday and have gained 96% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 21%.

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Oct 20, 2021

The Tell: Market-implied odds of a policy error by Federal Reserve jump to roughly 40%, Credit Suisse says
Anna Moneymaker/Getty ImagesThe market-implied odds of the Federal Reserve committing a policy mistake have jumped to around 40% from just under 25% two weeks ago, according to an analysis of the eurodollar curve done by Credit Suisse.Of all the scenarios being priced in by eurodollar traders, a policy mistake by the U.S. central bank outranks them all, Credit Suisse strategist Jonathan Cohn wrote in a note Wednesday. The policy mistake scenario is defined as one in which the Fed begins lifting interest rates in late 2022, but can only hike a few times before having to stop. Rising inflation worldwide has markets now pricing in interest rate increases by central banks across much of the developed world, a dynamic which Cohn refers to as the "front loading" of hikes. Against this backdrop, the market-implied terminal rate, or level at which hikes would come to an end, has been declining in the U.S. — suggesting traders have reservations about the durability of a hiking cycle with an early liftoff, he says.When taken with other scenarios also factored in by the market, "the analysis supports the notion that uncertainty around the inflation outlook is increasing the risk that the Fed will either fall behind or get ahead of the curve, so to speak," according to Cohn.Eurodollars are the preferred tool of traders for expressing their views on future interest-rate moves. Under the policy mistake scenario, the target for the fed funds rate never gets above 1% between December 2022 and December 2028, from its current level between zero and 0.25%. A second scenario gaining traction is the prospect of reflation, which has risen from zero to 20% in the past two weeks, as traders factor in a reduced likelihood of the Fed's base-case scenario coming to fruition. The Fed has penciled in a 2022 start to its rate-hike cycle, with the terminal fed funds rate reaching about 2.5% over the longer term.Until Tuesday, the U.S. Treasury yield curve had also recently been flashing conce

MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

E.L.F. Beauty giving workers off the week of Thanksgiving, extending summer Fridays
E.L.F. Beauty Inc. said Wednesday that it's closing its offices from the entire week of Thanksgiving, from Nov. 22 through Nov. 26 in order to let workers "disconnect and unplug from work, while focusing on health and wellness," according to a statement. The company is also extending its summer Friday schedule through the end of the year. REI has announced that it will be closed on Black Friday for the seventh year. Other retailers, like Walmart Inc. , will close on Thanksgiving day. E.L.F. stock has gained nearly 18% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 20.8% for the period.

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Oct 20, 2021

DC AG adds Zuckerberg as defendant in lawsuit against Facebook
District of Columbia Attorney General Karl Racine on Wednesday said he has added embattled Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg as defendant in a 2018 lawsuit related to Cambridge Analytica and Facebook's failure to protect user data. Racine is the first regulator to attempt to hold the company's co-founder personally responsible. "Allowing third-party apps like Cambridge Analytica to access user data was Mark Zuckerberg's brainchild," Racine tweeted. "Adding him to our lawsuit is unquestionably warranted and should send a message that corporate leaders will be held accountable for their actions." Facebook shares are flat in trading Wednesday. For they year, they are up 25%. The broader S&P 500 index is up 21% in 2021.

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Oct 20, 2021

Pinterest stock rockets after report says company has held merger talks with PayPal
Shares of Pinterest Inc. are up 11% in midday trading Wednesday after Bloomberg News reported that PayPal Holdings Inc. has approached the company about a potential deal. PayPal shares are off about 3% in Wednesday trading. The Bloomberg story, which cited multiple unnamed sources, said that the companies have discussed a takeout price of roughly $70 a share for Pinterest. The stock recently changed hands at $61.76. Pinterest shares were briefly halted for volatility but have resumed trading. Representatives from PayPal and Pinterest didn't immediately provide comment to MarketWatch.

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Oct 20, 2021

Adobe forecasts a record-setting online holiday shopping season but supply chain problems making many items scarce
Adobe Inc. expects U.S. online holiday sales between Nov. 1 and Dec. 31 to reach $207 billion, a new record. That forecast represents a 10% rise versus 2020. The five-day period from Thanksgiving Day to Cyber Monday is expected to drive $36 billion in sales, about 17% of the entire season, however growth during that period is slowing. Shoppers and retailers are also feeling the impact of global supply chain problems with out-of-stock messages soaring 172% compared with the pre-pandemic period. Adobe expects out-of-stocks to remain at that level and possibly increase for certain items. Apparel is experiencing the most out-of-stocks. The use of buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) options is also increasing, up 10% from last year and up 45% from 2019. "We are entering a second holiday season where the pandemic will dictate the terms," said Patrick Brown, vice president of growth marketing and insights at Adobe, in a statement. "Limited product availability, higher prices, and concerns about shipping delays will drive another surge towards e-commerce, as it provides more flexibility in how and when consumers choose to shop." The Amplify Online Retail ETF has slipped 1% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index is up 20.7% for the period.

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Oct 20, 2021

Cannabis real estate lender Pelorus Equity quadruples fund size to $1 billion
Specialty lender Pelorus Equity Group Inc. on Wednesday said it's increasing its privately held mortgage real estate investment trust, the Pelorus Fund, to $1 billion from $250 million to raise capital for bridge commercial real estate loans for cannabis businesses. The Laguna Hills, Calf., firm is launching a new, stabilized lending program with three- to five-year amortizing loans. "Our company launched its $100 million offering in 2018, and then in 2020, upsized it to $250 million, but with the 300% growth we've experienced in 2021, we continue to see an acceleration of institutional interest in our thesis and core strategy," said Dan Leimel, CEO of Pelorus Equity Group and manager of the Pelorus Fund. The company expects to have more than $250 million of assets under management by the end of the year. Founded in 2010, Pelorus has completed 58 commercial real-estate loan transactions and deployed $225 million to cannabis businesses.

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Oct 20, 2021

EIA reports an unexpected weekly decline in U.S. crude supplies
The Energy Information Administration reported on Wednesday that U.S. crude inventories fell for the first time in four weeks, down by 400,000 barrels for the week ended Oct. 15. That compared with an average 2 million-barrel climb expected by analysts polled by S&P Global Platts. The American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday reported a 3.3 million-barrel increase, according to sources. The EIA also reported weekly inventory declines of 5.4 million barrels for gasoline and 3.9 million barrels for distillates. The S&P Global Platts survey had forecast supply declines of 2.2 million barrels for gasoline and 2.4 million barrels for distillates. The EIA data also showed crude stocks at the Cushing, Okla., storage hub edged down by 2.4 million barrels for the week. Oil prices pared some gains following the EIA data. Ahead of its expiration at the end of Wednesday's trading session, the November West Texas Intermediate crude contract turned higher, up 3 cents, or 0.04%, at $82.99 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Futures were trading at $82.45 before the supply data.

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Oct 20, 2021

Stocks open slightly higher as S&P 500 attempts to extend winning streak
Stocks opened slightly higher Wednesday, as investors continued to sift through corporate earnings. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 23 points, or 0.1%, to 35,481. The S&P 500 rose 0.1% to 4,526, while the Nasdaq Composite edged up 0.1% to 15,151, with both indexes attempting to extend a winning streak to six sessions. Shares of Netflix Inc. dropped 2.7%, after the streaming video company reported a bounce in third-quarter revenue and subscriber numbers, but a slightly disappointing fourth-quarter forecast

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Oct 20, 2021

AirSculpt Technologies sets IPO price range at $15 to $17 a share
AirSculpt Technologies Inc. on Wednesday could raise about $160 million in its upcoming initial public offering, based on the midpoint of its estimated price range of $15 to $17 a share and 10 million shares in the offering. The company will raise about $26.6 million by offering 1.56 million shares, and selling shareholders will draw in $143.4 million of the total proceeds. AirSculpt Technologies will have 55.4 million shares outstanding after it goes public, with a market cap of $886 million based on a share price of $16. AirSculpt, which specializes in fat removal through a minimally invasive process, reported net income of $16.7 million on revenue of $61 million in the six months ended June 30, compared to a net loss of $908,000 and revenue of $22.1 million in the year-ago period. Vesey Street Capital Partners will own 47% of the company once it goes public, according to its IPO prospectus. Morgan Stanley, Piper Sandler and SVB Leerink are the lead underwriters out of five banks working on the deal.

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Oct 20, 2021

White House: Children will be able to get COVID-19 shots from their pediatricians
The White House on Wednesday announced a plan detailing how the U.S. plans to roll out COVID-19 vaccines for children between the ages of 5 and 11 years old if and when COVID-19 shots are authorized for this age group. White House officials said there is enough vaccine to immunize all 28 million children in this age group, and kids will be able to get a shot at 25,000 pediatricians' offices, in addition to 100 children's hospitals, "tens of thousands" of pharmacies, and some school and community sites. A Food and Drug Administration advisory committee is scheduled to meet Tuesday to discuss BioNTech SE and Pfizer Inc.'s application for authorization for elementary school-aged children; it will vote on whether the vaccine is safe and effective in this age group, and then the FDA will issue its decision. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also has to weigh in.

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Oct 20, 2021

Fitch analyst says Apollo provided more clarity on Athene integration
Fitch analyst Dafina Dunmore said Apollo Global Management caught Wall Street's attention on Tuesday when it projected it'll double its assets under management to $1 trillion and also provided specifics about the benefits of its pending combination with insurance annuities specialist Athene Holding Ltd. . "A one trillion number is hard to ignore...also the stock has had somewhat of a discount because of a lack of understanding of the synergies with Athene," Dunmore told MarketWatch. Apollo provided clarity on the economics of its relationship with Athene going forward, including the benefits of charging origination fees on the total amount of assets that Athene holds and that Apollo manages, rather than a management fee on the funds Apollo is investing on behalf of Athene. Another plus, she said, was the fact that Apollo will be getting roughly $35 billion a year in inflows from Athene on a regular basis rather than the more lumpy way of raising large private equity funds every few years. Another change that may be boosting Apollo is its decision to change its compensation structure in a move that will improve its margins on fee-related earnings. Employees at Apollo will get a lower portion of their compensation from fees and more from performance. Fee related compensation will now comprise 25% of pay, instead of 30%, while principal investing gains will make up 60% to 70% of compensation by 2026. This is a similar to a change that KKR made, she said. Apollo shares rallied 7% to an all-time closing high of $73.18 on Tuesday. The stock fell 0.7% in premarket trades on Wednesday. The stock is up 49.4% so far this year, compared to a rise of 20.3% by the S&P 500 .

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Oct 20, 2021

Wendy's will begin to shift to recycled plastic cups in 2022
Wendy's Co. announced Wednesday that it has partnered with Berry Global , a packaging and engineered products company, and LyondellBasell , a chemicals, plastics and refining company, to shift to cups that made from recycled materials and are more sustainable than the plastic-lined paper cups currently in use. Starting in early 2022 in the U.S. and Canada, Wendy's will use cups made from at least 20% recycled plastic. By 2023, all cups around the world will use recycled plastic. Earlier this year, the company announced that it would make its packaging more eco-friendly as well. Taken together, these changes are part of the company's commitment to sustainably source all of its consumer-facing packaging by 2026. Wendy's stock has edged up 0.8% for the year to date while the S&P 500 index has gained 20.3% for the period.

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Oct 20, 2021

Sage, Biogen now plan to submit depression drug candidate to FDA in second half of 2022
Shares of Sage Therapeutics Inc. gained 0.5% in premarket trading on Wednesday, the day after the company said it and Biogen Inc. plan to submit their experimental depression drug to U.S. regulators for approval in the second half of next year. They will also seek approval for zuranolone as a treatment for postpartum depression in the first half of 2023. "The good news is that Biogen (OP)/Sage (MP) have confirmation from the FDA that they have the necessary efficacy data to file for major depressive disorder," SVB Leerink's Marc Goodman told investors on Wednesday. "Investors were expecting a filing in both MDD and PPD around the end of the year, so this is a notable filing delay." Sage's stock is down 53.4% this year, while the broader S&P 500 is up 20.3%.

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Oct 20, 2021

Biogen's stock is up on strong earnings; new Alzheimer's drug had $300,000 in sales in Q3
Shares of Biogen Inc. were up 1.8% in premarket trading on Wednesday after the company beat expectations for the third quarter despite lower-than-expected utilization of Aduhelm, its controversial and closely watched new Alzheimer's disease treatment. Biogen had net income of $329.2 million, or $2.22 per share, in the third quarter of 2021, compared with net income of $701.5 million, or $4.47 per share, in the same quarter a year ago. Adjusted earnings per share were $4.47, against a FactSet consensus of $4.09. Biogen's revenue was $2.7 billion in the third quarter of the year, down 18% from $3.37 billion in the same three months of last year, against a FactSet consensus of $2.6 billion in revenue. The drop in revenue is due to several factors, including ongoing declining sales in its multiple-sclerosis portfolio and weak uptick of Aduhelm, which reported sales of $300,000. "The potential uptake of Aduhelm in the U.S. is delayed, but we continue to believe in its long-term potential," CEO Michel Vounatsos said in a news release. The company updated its guidance for the year, saying it now expects revenue of $10.8 billion to $10.9 billion in 2021, compared with previous guidance of $10.6 billion to $10.8 billion. It also expects adjusted EPS of $18.85 to $19.35, compared with previous guidance of $17.50 to $19.00. Biogen's stock is up 9.5% for the year, while the broader S&P 500 is up 20.3%.

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Oct 20, 2021

Abbott Laboratories stock surges after big profit and sales beats, and upbeat full-year outlook
Shares of Abbott Laboratories rallied 2.8% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the health care company reported third-quarter profit and sales that rose well above expectations, with the strongest growth seen in its diagnostics business, and provided an upbeat full-year outlook. Net income rose to $2.52 billion, or $1.17 a share, from $1.76 billion, or 69 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share rose to $1.40 from 98 cents to beat the FactSet consensus of 94 cents. Sales grew 23.4% to $10.93 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $9.56 billion, as nutrition sales rose 9.6%, diagnostics sales increased 48.2%, established pharmaceuticals sales grew 15.15 and medical devices sales rose 14.6%. Sales growth outpaced the 13.9% rise in operating costs and expenses. For 2021, the company expects adjusted EPS of $5.00 to $5.10, compared with the FactSet consensus of $4.46. Abbott Labs' stock has gained 9.0% year to date through Tuesday, while the S&P 500 has rallied 20.3%.

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Oct 20, 2021

Hexo names beverage executive Scott Cooper as CEO
Hexo Corp on Wednesday named beverage executive Scott Cooper its new president and CEO, two days after announcing the departure of founder and ex-CEO Sebastien St-Louis. Cooper currently works as CEO of Truss Beverage Co., a joint venture between Molson-Coors Canada and Hexo. Hexo Chairman Michael Munzar said Cooper's two decades of experience in consumer-packaged goods and his "success in launching and growing Truss' innovative portfolio to be the Canadian market leader in cannabis beverages, and experience working in the United States position him well to defend Hexo's position as a market leader in Canada," according to a statement. For an interim period not to exceed six months, Cooper will continue simultaneously in his current role as CEO of Truss Beverages to ensure a smooth transition for the business, the company said. Shares of Hexo are down 47.3% this year, compared to a rise of 1% by the Cannabis ETF .

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Netflix stock slumps after earnings as Deutsche Bank downgrades, but most analysts boost price targets
Shares of Netflix Inc. slumped 2.3% in premarket trading, as investors expressed disappointment that the streaming video giant's third-quarter results and subscriber guidance didn't beat expectations by enough. That said, no less than 19 of the 48 analysts surveyed by FactSet raised their stock price targets and one lowered their target, while Deutsche Bank's Bryan Kraft went as far as downgrading the stock. Kraft cut his rating to hold from buy, while keeping his price target at $590, which is 8.3% below Tuesday's closing price of $639.00. "While, on the one hand, we share the market's enthusiasm toward Netflix's very strong 4Q content slate and the optionality it brings to 4Q net adds; on the other hand, we think a 4Q subscriber beat is already more than priced into the stock," Bryan wrote in a note to clients. Meanwhile, J.P. Morgan's Doug Anmuth reiterated his overweight rating but raised his price target to $750 from $705, saying a strong content slate increases visibility into year-end, and "ho-hum" earnings after such a strong recent rally for the stock might actually be "healthier" over time. The stock has soared 20.3% over the past three months through Tuesday while the S&P 500 has gained 4.6%.

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Oct 20, 2021

Citizens net income doubles as ROTCE rises
Citizens Financial Group Inc. said Wednesday its second-quarter net income rose to $648 million, or $1.46 a share, from $253 million, or 53 cents a share. Underlying earnings rose to $1.46 a share from 55 cents a share. Revenue fell to $1.66 billion from $1.75 billion. Analysts expected the regional bank to earn $1.16 a share on revenue of $1.64 billion. The company's underlying return on total capital employed rose to 17.7% from 6.9% -- a measure that's been a focus of CEO Bruce Van Saun. Shares of Citizens, which were inactive in premarket trading, are up 37.3% so far this year, compared to an increase of 41.8% by the KBW Nasdaq Bank Index .

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Winnebago results reach a record
Winnebago Industries Inc. shares rise 3.8% in Wednesday premarket trading after the outdoor lifestyle company reported record fourth-quarter earnings and results. Net income totaled $84.1 million, or $2.45 per share, nearly doubling the $42.5 million, or $1.25, the company reported last year. Adjusted EPS of $2.57 exceeded the FactSet consensus of $2.01. Revenue totaled $1.036 billion, up from $737.8 million last year and also ahead of the FactSet consensus of $959 million. Winnebago announced a new share repurchase program of $200 million last week, which doesn't expire and replaces the previous program. Winnebago stock has gained 20.5% for the year to date, just ahead of the S&P 500 index , which is up 20.3% for the period.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Baker Hughes misses profit and revenue forecasts as Hurricane Ida, inflation and supply constraints weighed
Shares of Baker Hughes Co. sank 1.8% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the oilfield products and services company reported third-quarter profit and revenue that missed expectations, as results were hurt by Hurricane Ida, cost inflation in chemicals and supply-chain constraints. The company swung to net income of $8 million, or a penny a share, from a loss of $170 million, or 25 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share rose to 16 cents from 10 cents, but missed the FactSet consensus of 21 cents. Revenue edged up 0.9% to $5.09 billion but was below the FactSet consensus of $5.33 billion, while total costs and expenses declined 7.5% to $4.72 billion. "As we look ahead to the rest of 2021 and into 2022, we see continued signs of global economic recovery that should drive further demand growth for oil and natural gas," said Chief Executive Lorenzo Simonelli. "However, the pace of growth is being hampered by the COVID-19 Delta variant, global chip shortages, supply chain issues, and energy supply constraints." The stock, which closed at a 2 1/2-year high as recently as Monday, has run up 34.1% over the past three months through Tuesday, while the SPDR Energy Select Sector ETF has rallied 21.9% and the S&P 500 has gained 4.6%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

LianBio to raise up to $345 million in planned IPO at valuation of $1.8 billion
LianBio , a biotech with operations in the U.S. and China, set terms for its initial public offering on Wednesday, with plans to offer 20.3 million American Depositary Shares priced at $15 to $17 each. The company would raise $345 million at the top of that range, at a valuation of $1.8 billion, based on the 105.3 million shares expected to be outstanding once the deal closes. The company has applied to list on Nasdaq, under the ticker "LIAN." Goldman Sachs, Jefferies, BofA Securities and Raymond James are underwriting the deal. Proceeds will be used for clinical development and R&D and for general corporate purposes. "We are a global, science-driven biopharmaceutical company dedicated to developing and commercializing innovative medicines for patients with unmet medical needs, with an initial focus on in-licensing assets for Greater China and other Asian markets," the company says in its filing documents. The deal comes as the Renaissance IPO ETF has gained 6% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 20%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Lithia Motors stock set to rally after profit and revenue rise well above forecasts
Shares of Lithia Motors Inc. were indicated up about 1% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the auto retailer reported third-quarter profit and revenue that rose sharply and were well above expectations. Net income nearly doubled, to $307.9 mullion, or $10.11 a share, from $158.8 million, or $6.86 a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share rose 63% to $11.21, beating the FactSet consensus of $9.30. Revenue grew 70.4% to $6.17 billion, above the FactSet consensus of $5.78 billion, while cost of sales increased 67.8% to $4.98 billion. New vehicle retail revenue rose 53.9% to $2.90 billion and used vehicle retail revenue rose 90.2% to $2.08 billion. "The pipeline is robust and we continue to identify accretive deals that strategically expand our network while meeting our disciplined return thresholds," said Chief Executive Bryan DeBoer. The company said it is pacing ahead of schedule toward its goal of $50 billion in revenue and $50 of EPS by 2025. The stock has gained 15.7% year to date while the S&P 500 has advanced 20.3%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Online-learning platform Udemy to offer 14.5 million shares in IPO priced at $27 to $29 each
Online-learning platform Udemy Inc. set terms for its initial public offering on Wednesday, with plans to offer 14.5 million shares priced at $27 to $29 each. The company would raise $420.5 million at the top of that range at a valuation of almost $4 billion, based on the 137.4 million shares expected to be outstanding after the deal closes. The company has applied to list on Nasdaq, under the ticker "UDMY." Morgan Stanley and JP Morgan are lead underwriters in a syndicate of 11 banks. Proceeds of the deal will be used for general corporate purposes and working capital, although it will also be open to acquiring or investment in businesses or technologies. The company had a net loss of $29.4 million in the six months ended June 30, narrower than the loss of $52.5 million posted in the year-earlier period. Revenue rose to $250.6 million from $201.4 million. "Udemy operates a two-sided marketplace where our instructors develop content to meet learner demand," the company says in its filing documents. "Courses can be accessed through our direct-to-consumer or Udemy Business, or UB, offerings. Our platform provides over 44 million learners with access to over 183,000 courses in 75 languages and over 180 countries." The deal comes as the Renaissance IPO ETF has gained 6% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 20%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Coronavirus tally: Global cases of COVID-19 head toward 242 million and WHO says Europe only region with rising cases
The global tally for the coronavirus-borne illness climbed above 241.6 million on Wednesday, while the death toll edged above 4.91 million, according to data aggregated by Johns Hopkins University. The U.S. continues to lead the world with a total of 45.1 million cases and 728,296 deaths. The U.S. is averaging more than 1,500 deaths a day, according to a New York Times tracker, although cases and hospitalizations are declining. The World Health Organization said the only region with rising cases in the past week was Europe, where the U.K., Russia and Turkey are suffering the most new infections. In its weekly epidemiological update, the agency said more than half of European countries reported a rise in their numbers in the most recent week and cases rose by about 1.3 million. The news comes as Russia, the country with the most COVID fatalities in the region, repeatedly set new one-day death toll records as its population continues to avoid vaccination. And while the head of Britain's National Health Service has urged the government to introduce stricter COVID-19 protocols including mask-wearing and the faster vaccination of children, politicians have so far demurred, as the Associated Press reported.. India is second by cases after the U.S. at 34.1 million and has suffered 452,651 deaths. Brazil has second highest death toll at 603,855 and 21.7 million cases. In Europe, Russia has 222,3120 deaths, followed by the U.K. at 139,265.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Anthem stock gains after profit and revenue beats, raised full-year earnings outlook
Shares of Anthem Inc. rose 0.6% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the health benefits company reported third-quarter profit and revenue that rose above expectations, amid higher premium revenue due to growth in Medicaid and Medicare, and raised its full-year outlook. Net income rose nearly seven-fold to $1.51 billion, or $6.13 a share, from $222 million, or 87 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding nonrecurring items, adjusted earnings per share came to $6.79, above the FactSet consensus of $6.37. Revenue grew 15.0% to $35.82 billion, beating the FactSet consensus of $35.35 billion, while expenses increased 9.9% to $33.83 billion. Medical enrollment grew 5.7% to 45.1 million members. The company raised is 2021 adjusted EPS guidance to "greater than $25.85" from "greater than $25.50," compared with the FactSet consensus is $25.66. The stock has rallied 22.6% year to date through Tuesday, while the SPDR Health Care Select Sector ETF has advanced 13.5% and the S&P 500 has climbed 20.3%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Micron to spend $150 billion in 10 years on building out memory manufacturing, stock falls
Shares of Micron Technology Inc. fell 1.3% in premarket trading Wednesday, after the memory and semiconductor company said it will invest $150 billion over the next decade in memory manufacturing and research and development. The investment, which could include U.S. fab expansion, is aimed at addressing demand for memory, as memory and storage currently represent about 30% of the semiconductor market. "Memory is at the leading edge of semiconductor manufacturing and fuels everything from feature-rich 5G smartphones to the AI-enabled cloud," said Chief Executive Sanjay Mehrotra. "Micron's leadership in both DRAM and NAND technologies and the strength of our roadmap enable us to invest more than $150 billion with confidence to extend our industry-leading memory innovation into the next decade, and deliver differentiated products to our customers." Micron's stock has dropped 10.1% year to date while the PHLX Semiconductor Index has climbed 21.0% and the S&P 500 has advanced 20.3%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Novavax shares tumble after report on vaccine manufacturing difficulties
Novavax shares tumbled 16% in premarket action after Politico reported it faces significant hurdles in proving it can manufacture a shot that meets regulators' quality standards, citing three people with direct knowledge of the company's problems. The report said Novavax's troubles mean the international consortium known as COVAX is now likely to fall short of its 2 billion dose target to lower and middle-income countries by the end of 2022 by more than 1 billion doses. The report said Novavax's difficulties are more concerning than the analytics and testing issues disclosed in Securities and Exchange Commission filings. Novavax told Politico that it still plans on filing for emergency use authorization by the end of the year and will fulfill all its committed doses both in the U.S. and globally.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 20, 2021

Deutsche Bundesbank President Jens Weidmann resigns
Jens Weidmann, the president of the Bundesbank and one of the more hawkish European Central Bank voters, announced his resignation on Wednesday, which he said was for personal reasons. Weidmann said he will leave at the end of the year. "I have come to the conclusion that more than 10 years is a good measure of time to turn over a new leaf - for the Bundesbank, but also for me personally," Weidmann said. He noted the "sometimes difficult" discussions at the ECB, including the central bank's new strategy. "A symmetrical, clearer inflation target has been agreed. Side effects and in particular financial stability risks are to be given greater attention. A targeted overshooting of the inflation rate was rejected," Weidmann said. The euro saw little movement after his resignation, recently fetching $1.1628.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 19, 2021

Snap, TikTok, YouTube are next up for Senate grilling on impact on kids
Representatives from Alphabet Inc. parent Google's YouTube, Snap Inc. , and TikTok are scheduled to testify Oct. 26 for the next Senate panel inquisition on social media's impact on kids. Facebook Inc. faced a similar reckoning late last month. Next week's hearing will be held by Sens. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., who chastised Facebook for knowingly allowing policies on Instagram that are harmful to teens following a blockbuster report in the Wall Street Journal.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 19, 2021

Express CFO Pericleous to leave next month, COO Moellering appointed interim CFO
Express Inc. said late Tuesday Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer Perry Pericleous is leaving his job on Nov. 12 to "pursue another opportunity." Chief Operating Officer Matthew Moellering was appointed interim CFO while the company searches for a new CFO, Express said. Pericleous, who reports to Moellering, will continue to work closely with the COO ensure a smooth transition, the retailer said. Shares of Express rose 0.5% in the extended session Tuesday after ending the regular trading day up 0.7%.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 19, 2021

API data reportedly show a more than 3 million-barrel weekly climb in U.S. crude supplies
The American Petroleum Institute reported late Tuesday that U.S. crude supplies rose by 3.3 million barrels for the week ended Oct. 15, according to sources. The API reportedly showed inventory declines of 3.5 million barrels for gasoline and 3 million barrels for distillates. Crude stocks at the Cushing, Okla., storage hub, meanwhile, edged down by 2.5 million barrels for the week, sources said. Inventory data from the Energy Information Administration will be released Wednesday. On average, the EIA is expected to show crude inventories up by 2 million barrels, according to a survey of analysts conducted by S&P Global Platts. The survey also calls for supply declines of 2.2 million barrels for gasoline and 2.4 million barrels for distillates. November West Texas Intermediate crude was at $83.01 a barrel in electronic trading, after settling Tuesday at $82.96 on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 19, 2021

S&P 500 retakes 4,500 and rises for fifth straight session to clinch longest win streak in 2 months; Bitcoin ETF rises
U.S. stock benchmarks on Tuesday finished solidly higher for another session, putting the main indexes near closing highs, supported by strong corporate earnings, despite the spread of the coronavirus delta variant and supply-chain disruptions. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 0.6% to 35,457, the S&P 500 index finished up 0.7% to around 4,519, gaining for a fifth straight session, matching the longest win streak since Aug. 25; while the Nasdaq Composite Index ended 0.7% higher at 15,129. Separately, the first exchange-traded fund linked to bitcoin got off to a solid start in its first trading day on the NYSE. The ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF closed up 4.7% as bitcoin prices trading near an all-time high around $65,000. The ProShares bitcoin ETF is pegged to bitcoin futures, and offers indirect exposure to the world's No. 1 crypto.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 19, 2021

Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas tests positive for COVID-19
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas has tested positive for COVID-19, reports said Tuesday. Mayorkas, who is fully vaccinated, tested positive Tuesday morning and is experiencing mild congestion, a department spokesperson told CNN. Mayorkas had been scheduled to travel to Colombia with Secretary of State Antony Blinken but is now working from home.

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MarketWatch MarketPulse
Oct 19, 2021

U.S. oil, natural-gas prices settle higher as traders weigh news on Russian natural-gas supplies
U.S. crude-oil futures climbed on Tuesday to log another settlement at their highest in about seven years, and natural-gas prices finished higher, reclaiming the $5 level after losing nearly 8% on Monday. Russia indicated that it may not provide additional natural gas to European consumers amid an energy crunch in the region, unless it gets regulatory approval to start shipments through the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, Bloomberg reported Tuesday. Renewed worries about natural-gas supplies likely fed expectations that the energy market would need to boost demand for oil, analysts said. It looks like Russia may not increase natural gas shipments to Europe, said Phil Flynn, senior market analyst at The Price Futures Group. The Russians are "in no hurry whatsoever to comply" with demands from the European Union, he said. West Texas Intermediate crude for November delivery rose 52 cents, or 0.6%, to settle at $82.96 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the highest finish for a front-month contract since Oct. 13, 2014, according to FactSet data. November natural gas added 10 cents, or 2%, to settle at $5.088 per million British thermal units after losing 7.8% on Monday.

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