Stock Futures Climb Amid Reports Trump Plans To Fast-track Vaccine

Dow Jones Industrial Average: +0.7% Friday, -2.1% YTD (0% last week) (DIA)

Nasdaq Composite: +0.4% Friday, +26.1% YTD (+2.7% last week) (COMP)

FTSE 100 continues heading sideways

The FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 once again struggled to find any momentum last week, sinking 1.5% and 0.9% respectively, as both indices continued to track sideways. UK economic data last week showed some improvement in a variety of areas, with positive retail sales growth, plus a marginal gain in manufacturing and industrial sector figures. However, similar to the US, the UK economy is recovering unevenly. While retail sales numbers beat economist expectations, manufacturing sector orders disappointed. On Friday, InterContinental Hotels Group (ICHGF) was a standout in the FTSE 100, adding 6.2% after rumours of a merger deal with French hotel firm Accor (ACCYY). A deal would create the world’s largest hotel chain. The company’s share price is still down 17.8% year-to-date but has rallied 17.4% over the past three months.

FTSE 100: -0.2% Friday, -20.4% YTD, (-1.5% last week)

FTSE 250: +0.5% Friday, -19.7% YTD (-0.9% last week)

What to watch

Palo Alto Networks: Cybersecurity firm Palo Alto Networks (PANW) has been a beneficiary of the mass shift to virtual working, adding 16.5% to its share price year-to-date, although that pales in comparison to the 125% gain delivered by fellow cybersecurity name Crowdstrike (CRWD), and Okta’s (OKTA) 81% gain. The company delivers its latest quarterly earnings on Monday, after reporting a jump in sales last quarter, with management predicting that trend would continue as firms shift to digital-only working practices. Currently, 26 Wall Street analysts rate the stock as a buy or overweight, and 11 as a hold.

Chicago Fed National Activity Index: The only major economic data point being reported on Monday is the Chicago Fed’s July national activity index, which is a composite of 85 different monthly indicators of US economic activity. A zero value indicates that the national economy is growing at its historical trend rate, with positive values indicating growth. Per Trading Economics, the forecast value for July is 2, after a 4.11 in June. The three-month moving average of the index was -3.49 in June, an improvement on -6.36 in May and -7.52 in April.

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This article should not be taken as investment advice, personal recommendation, or an offer of, or solicitation to buy or sell, any financial instruments. This material has been prepared without ...

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