Stock Market Futures Moving Sideways Ahead Of First-Quarter GDP Revision
U.S. stock futures are largely unchanged in early morning trading on Thursday. In the larger scheme of things, stocks continue to experience choppiness amidst growing investor concerns. The likes of which would be about the state of the U.S. economy and the Federal Reserve’s inflation plans. Speaking of the Fed, investors got some insight into their latest meeting minutes yesterday. In which, central bank officials expressed approval for additional 50 basis point interest rate increases.
Accordingly, such a move could, in theory, serve to further reel in inflation that is accelerating at levels last seen decades ago. With companies across the board citing inflationary pressures as a major growth inhibitor this earnings season, this would be a strategic play by the Fed. Speaking on all this is James Liu, the founder of Clearnomics. He says, “The challenge right now is we’re in this new chapter of the inflation story. If you’ll recall, last year it started with whether it’s transitory — turns out, it wasn’t. Then it became about the Fed at the end of last year and earlier this year, whether or not they would tighten significantly. And they did, and now all that’s priced in.” Liu adds, “And now what the market is looking at is are basically the fundamentals around how inflation affects corporate profitability and consumer demand.“
While investors look ahead to all this economic data, there is also no shortage of notable earnings-related news in the stock market now. As of 5:26 a.m. ET, the Dow and S&P 500 futures are rising by 0.17% and 0.08% respectively. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq futures are trading lower by 0.23%.
Twitter Stock In Focus As Musk Bumps Takeover Commitment To $33.5 Billion
Twitter (NYSE: TWTR) is yet again in the limelight in the stock market today. This follows an update from Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) CEO Elon Musk regarding his personal contribution to the takeover bid. Notably, after making amendments to the ownership filing, Musk’s aggregate equity commitment is now up to a whopping $33.5 billion.
Also in the filing, Musk is amidst ongoing discussions with notable Twitter shareholders as well. Among which includes founder Jack Dorsey. These discussions will be regarding a proposal to contribute their shares to retain a stake in Twitter. Overall, this marks yet another key development in the ongoing Twitter-Musk saga. Should the $44 billion deal be successful, Musk will be serving as the temporary CEO of Twitter for starters.
For one thing, this takeover comes at a time when social media firms that rely on digital ad revenue are facing pressures. Just last month, Twitter reported somewhat mixed figures in its first fiscal quarter update. On one hand, the company’s monetizable daily active user count is up to 229 million. For reference, the consensus on Wall Street at the time was 226.9 million. On the other hand, the company’s revenue of $1.2 billion is just shy of consensus analyst estimates of $1.23 billion. Nonetheless, investors will likely still be tuning in to TWTR stock at today’s opening bell.
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Nvidia Tops Estimates But Loses Steam Following Conservative Guidance
In other news, Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA) posted its latest quarterly earnings update yesterday. After the closing bell, the semiconductor chip manufacturer reported generally positive figures. According to the press release, Nvidia’s earnings per share for the quarter is $1.36. Additionally, the company’s total quarterly revenue is $8.29 billion. To put things into perspective, consensus figures on Wall Street are $1.3 and $8.11 billion respectively. Year-over-year, Nvidia’s earnings per share and total revenue are up by 78% and 46% respectively as well.
All in all, the company cites continuous strength across its flagship gaming and data center business segments. In fact, total sales from its data center offerings are up by 83% year-over-year, totaling $3.75 billion in revenue. This segment is already outpacing Nvidia’s long standing gaming division which raked in revenue of $3.62 billion, a 31% increase year-over-year. Even as the company seems to be making the most of the uptick in global chip demand, NVDA stock is feeling the heat.
For the most part, investors appear to be focusing on Nvidia’s latest seemingly downbeat outlook for the quarter. Also in the earnings report, the company is now anticipating revenue of $8.1 billion for its second fiscal quarter. For reference, the consensus on Wall Street was $8.54 billion. According to CEO Jensen Huang, this conservative guidance stems from Nvidia experiencing a “challenging macro environment.” This would be an increasingly prominent source of concern for businesses across industries this earnings season. With the current weakness in NVDA stock, some investors could see an opportunity.
Williams-Sonoma Posts Solid Figures In First Quarter Earnings Update; Sticks To Full-Year Outlook
Meanwhile, Williams-Sonoma (NYSE: WSM) seems to be among the top attention grabbers in the retail scene today. In brief, the home retailer is receiving plenty of hype after reporting its first fiscal quarter results yesterday. According to the earnings report, WSM’s quarterly earnings per share is $3.50. Furthermore, its total revenue for the quarter is $1.89 billion. To compare, this is versus Wall Street consensus estimates of $2.90 and $1.81 billion.
Going into further detail about the company’s overall performance is CEO Laura Alber. She highlights, “These results continue to demonstrate the strength of our multi-brand portfolio and our team’s ability to navigate challenges and outperform. Additionally, these results are even more impressive when considering that we were up against last year’s strong performance with a comp of more than 40%.” On the whole, it seems like WSM is holding strong even as other retailers experience macro headwind-related decelerations.
Looking forward, Alber adds that WSM remains confident about its ability to achieve its financial goals for the fiscal year. She cites “a solid line-up of growth initiatives and operational improvements,” as key growth drivers now. As such, it would not surprise me to see investors flocking toward WSM stock in the stock market today.
Stock Market Earnings To Watch Today
Moving on to today’s earnings, we have another stellar lineup to consider as well. Before the opening bell, we have a healthy mix of tech and retail firms on deck. For tech, Alibaba (NYSE: BABA), Baidu (NASDAQ: BIDU), and Medtronic (NYSE: MDT) are hosting their earnings calls. On the retail side, Macy’s (NYSE: M), Dollar Tree (NASDAQ: DLTR), Dollar General (NYSE: DG), and Burlington (NYSE: BURL).
In the post-market hours, we are also looking at a similar group of firms posting financial updates. For starters, tech giants like Dell (NYSE: DELL), Autodesk (NASDAQ: ADSK), Zscaler (NASDAQ: ZS), and Marvell (NASDAQ: MRVL) are reporting. Also, for retailers, Costco (NASDAQ: COST), Gap (NYSE: GPS), and American Eagle Outfitters (NYSE: AEO) will be on tap. Safe to say, we could be looking at another eventful day in the stock market.