Stock Market Today Mid-Morning Updates
On Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up by 20 points. This comes as investors continue to anticipate the next policy moves by the Federal Reserve. Fresh commentary from Fed officials gives a hawkish outlook. For instance, St. Louis Fed President James Bullard recently said that he wanted the Fed to get to between 3% to 3.25% on the Fed funds rate in the second half of the year. This would imply more aggressive, front-loaded interest rate hikes in the near term. Tech stocks continue to take the brunt of the accompanying rise in Treasury yields. Stocks like Amazon ( NASDAQ: AMZN) are down by over 4% in the past 5 trading sessions.
Recently, Spirit Airlines (NYSE: SAVE) says that it will begin talks with JetBlue (NASDAQ: JBLU) to acquire Spirit in an all-cash transaction for $33.00 per share. The bid is approximately $3.6 billion. Spirit had agreed earlier this year to be taken over by Frontier Airlines parent Frontier Group (NASDAQ: ULCC) but said the JetBlue offer could lead to a “superior proposal.”
Among the Dow Jones leaders, shares of Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) are down by 1.28% today while Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) is also down by 1.29%. Meanwhile, Disney (NYSE: DIS) and Nike (NYSE: NKE) are trading lower on Friday. Among the Dow financial leaders, Visa (NYSE: V) is down by 0.32% while JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) is up by 0.91%.
Shares of EV leader Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) are down by 3.02% on Friday. Rival EV companies like Rivian (NASDAQ: RIVN) are also down by 3.65%. Lucid Group (NASDAQ: LCID) is also down by 2.53% today. Chinese EV leaders like Nio (NYSE: NIO) and Xpeng Motors (NYSE: XPEV) opened lower today.
Dow Jones Today: Treasury Yields And Oil Prices Continue to Rise
Following the stock market opening on Friday, the S&P 500, Dow and Nasdaq are trading lower at 0.49%, 0.03%, and 1.26% respectively. Among exchange-traded funds, the Nasdaq 100 tracker Invesco QQQ Trust (NASDAQ: QQQ) is down by 1.22% while the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEARCA: SPY) is also down by 0.45%.
The 10-year Treasury yield continues to tick higher today, topping 2.704%. This hits a fresh 3-year high on Friday as investors continue to dissect the minutes from the previous Fed meeting. The Fed minutes that were published on Wednesday indicate that the central bank plans to shrink its balance sheet by $95 billion a month. Fed officials also suggested there could be one or more 50-basis-point interest rate hikes on the cards.
Oil prices continue to inch higher today, with West Texas Intermediate crude at $96 per barrel. This comes after the U.S. announced its largest-ever release from its Strategic Petroleum Reserve and International Energy Agency member nations also joined the effort to combat soaring oil prices and gasoline prices.
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WD-40 Stock Jumps As Company Posts Solid Quarterly Earnings Figures
WD-40 (NASDAQ: WDFC) is making waves in the stock market today. Crucially, this is thanks to the company’s latest quarterly financial release. Getting straight to it, WD-40 posted earnings of $1.41 per share, crushing analyst estimates of $1.01. Additionally, the company is also looking at a total revenue of $130 million, up from $111.9 million in the same quarter last year. After considering the substantial earnings beat from WD-40, the hype around WDFC stock is understandable. As it stands, the company’s shares are trading higher by over 12% today.
More importantly, this is happening even as the company trims its fiscal 2022 net income guidance. WD-40 is currently reducing its earnings outlook by about 2%. According to CEO Garry Ridge, this is mainly due to the “challenging inflationary environment we are currently operating in.” For its annual sales, WD-40 is forecasting a figure between $522 million and $547 million.
Nevertheless, the company’s performance for the latest quarter is commendable. Ridge explains, “The enhancements we have made have enabled us to increase the production capacity of our highest volume products and return to solid growth in our largest market, the United States, which experienced a 26 percent increase in maintenance product sales in the second quarter.” All in all, as the company continues to navigate current market conditions effectively, WDFC stock is on the rise.
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CrowdStrike Gaining Traction Following Additional Security Clearance From U.S. Department Of Defense
Another stock market news headliner today is CrowdStrike (NASDAQ: CRWD). By and large, this is likely a result of the company’s latest nod from the U.S. government. In detail, the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) is now officially granting CrowdStrike Impact Level 4 authorization. While it is a provisional authorization, it still marks a strategic win for CrowdStrike. Why is this so might you ask? Well, this security clearance means that it can better access controlled unclassified information (CUI) at the federal level. Accordingly, this provides CrowdStrike with deeper insights into confidential government files, allowing the company to better protect them.
In practice, CrowdStrike can now efficiently deploy its Falcon cybersecurity platform across a vast array of government clients. The likes of which mainly consist of DoD and Defense Industrial Base (DIB) divisions. Overall, the Falcon platform’s key focus here would be to protect the CUI assets of these departments from cyber threats. Despite its current momentum on this front, CrowdStrike remains steadfast in its growth strategy. This is apparent as the company is already gunning for an Impact Level 5 authorization. Namely, the information comes from CrowdStrike’s chief security officer, Shawn Henry.
Furthermore, Henry also speaks on the importance of this news. He says, “This authorization will further CrowdStrike’s support to federal agencies in defending against modern cyber threats, and we remain committed to bolstering our engagements with the public sector.” Not to mention, the company’s latest team-up with Mandiant (NASDAQ: MNDT), another cybersecurity firm, is also worth considering. The two companies are working together to support joint clients via software integrations between their flagship platforms. As a result of all this, CRWD stock is up by over 3% at today’s opening bell.
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