Stock Market Futures Moving Sideways Heading Into The Start Of Earnings Season

Stock market futures remain mostly unchanged in early morning trading today. This comes as investors look towards a week filled with inflation data. To begin with, we have the latest Consumer Price Index (CPI) readings from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics due on Wednesday. Secondly, investors will also be eagerly eyeing the Federal Reserve’s Beige Book on the same day as well for information on current economic conditions. Furthermore, big banks are set to kick off the latest earnings season later this week.

Regarding all this, Deutsche Bank (NYSE: DB) economists Henry Allen and Jim Reid provided some insight via a note. They said, “Recent months have seen consistent upside surprises as inflation has increasingly broadened out, and it’s now the case that seven of the last nine CPI releases have seen the monthly headline increase come in above the consensus among economists on Bloomberg, which just demonstrates how this has taken a lot of people by surprise.” They continued, “Our U.S. economists are projecting that year-on-year inflation will move higher once again, with an increase to +7.0%.” As of 7:34 a.m. ET, the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq futures an are trading lower by 0.23%, 0.92% and 2.11%. respectively.

PayPal Considering Launch Of PayPal Coin In Latest Crypto Play

PayPal (NASDAQ: PYPL), a leading name in the fintech space, is reportedly making an aggressive play in the crypto space. Namely, the company is currently “exploring” the possibility of launching its own stablecoin. Over the weekend, PayPal SVP of crypto and digital currencies, Jose Fernandez da Ponte, revealed all of this. He noted, “We are exploring a stablecoin; if and when we seek to move forward, we will, of course, work closely with relevant regulators.” This news comes after recent findings from PayPal’s smartphone app indicated plans for a “PayPal Coin”. Overall, this move would make sense given the broader fintech industry’s growing focus on digital currencies now.

Even so, it is important to note that the current news revolves around a potential PayPal stablecoin. For those uninitiated, a stablecoin is different from conventional cryptos such as Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH). In fact, stablecoins, as the name suggests, are backed and priced by the value of existing currencies or commodities. According to the current data from Bloomberg sources, a potential PayPal Coin would be “backed by the U.S. dollar”. Given all of this, it seems that PayPal is looking to be a first amongst its fintech peers in launching a stablecoin. Moreover, da Ponte also recently said that PayPal has “not yet seen a stablecoin out there that is purpose-built for payments”. As such, I could see investors eyeing PYPL stock at this week’s opening bell.

PYPL stock
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

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Ocugen Releases Latest Booster Shot Data For Upcoming Covid Vaccine Candidate

Elsewhere, Ocugen (NASDAQ: OCGN) provided a positive update on its ongoing Covid-19 vaccine partnership with India’s Bharat Biotech. In detail, the company announced Phase 2 data regarding Covaxin, the vaccine candidate it plans to commercialize in the U.S. According to the data, a booster shot generates over a 10-fold rise in antibody levels across existing variants. Additionally, Ocugen also highlights that the duo are actively studying the effectiveness of the vaccine against the prominent Omicron variant. As a result, OCGN stock could be worth watching in the stock market now.

Generally, participants aged 12 to 64 years old received the additional dose six months after completing a two-dose course. Subsequently, a significant increase in antibody levels was detectable in more than 75% of all subjects. On top of all that, the current data pool shows no serious adverse events after receiving the booster shot. This would include hospitalization or death, according to the duo. In the larger scheme of things, this would be a plus point for Ocugen following its Emergency Use Listing from the WHO last November. Time will tell if the company can deliver on this or not. For now, such news could put OCGN stock on investors’ radars.

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GM Aligns With California Emission Standards

In other news, General Motors (NYSE: GM) seems to be making headway over in California. For the most part, this would be thanks to its recognition of California’s official vehicle emission standards. This, of course, is under the Clean Air Act. According to the Detroit Free Press, the automaker wrote a letter to California Gov. Gavin Newsom over the weekend affirming this. In turn, GM is now eligible to supply the government fleet with its upcoming EVs. Commenting on all this is Governor Newsom himself. He said, “GM is joining California in our fight for clean air and emission reduction as part of the company’s pursuit of a zero-emissions future.

Notably, this marks another solid win for GM as it potentially grows its addressable market. In fact, the automotive titan is already planning to spend $35 billion on developing its EVs through 2025. As it stands, the company is currently aiming to have an all-electric lineup of vehicles by 2035. This latest play would serve to show its commitment towards building a solid customer base for its EVs. All things considered, GM stock could be turning some heads in the stock market today.

GM stock
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

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John Deere Reveals Fully-Autonomous Mobile App-Controlled Tractor

John Deere (NYSE: DE) is among the major companies making headlines at CES 2022 now. To highlight, the company unveiled a new autonomous tractor at the event. Given that John Deere is a global leader in the manufacturing of farming equipment, this is a notable play. According to the company, the farmer-less tractor comes with an attached tillage implement. Explaining the importance of this is Julian Sanchez, director of emerging technologies at John Deere.

All in all, Sanchez notes that tillage is a crucial yet time-consuming process for prepping the soil for next season’s plants. By automating the process, John Deere offers farmers a new level of convenience on this front. Not to mention, the company also announced new additive equipment that complements its 8R 410 tractors. In theory, this add-on brings full autonomy to its existing tractors via a total of 12 stereo cameras attached across two boxes on the front and back of the tractor. All of which employ Nvidia (NASDAQ: NVDA) graphics processing units to do so. To top it all off, farmers can also control the machine from a smartphone app. With such innovations from the company, investors could be considering DE stock now.

DE stock
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

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