US equity markets appear poised to continue their declines as investors consider rising wage inflation and another mixed round of earnings reports. Dow futures are down over 200 points or 0.5% and NASDAQ futures have slipped into the red as well, adding to yesterday’s declines of 1.4% for the Dow and 3.75% for the NASDAQ.
Overseas action has been varied, the Hang Seng soared 3.25% in its return to trading from the Lunar New Year holidays. The Nikkei rose 0.75% the FTSE is flat and the Dax is down 1.5%. Commodities are also mixed today. WTI crude oil has decisively broken out over $90.00/bbl with a 2.0% rally, and copper is up 0.4%, but natural gas is down 2.1%.
North American employment reports are out and results were very mixed. US nonfarm payrolls came in much better than expected (467K vs street 150K) especially in the wake of Wednesday’s weak ADP payrolls report and articles in the press which had suggested the potential for a contraction. A big plunge in jobs did happen in Omicron lockdown impacted Canada (-200K vs street -117K). Wage pressures continued to increase in the US (5.7% vs street 5.2% and previous 5.0%) but eased off in Canada (2.4% vs previous 2.7%).
It is another mixed day for earnings reports. Amazon.com is up 12.1% in premarket trading after beating the street on earnings ($5.80 vs street $3.57) shrugging off slightly disappointing sales and sales guidance. Ford, meanwhile is down 5.4% premarket after reporting disappointing earnings ($0.26 vs street 0.45). Social media stocks are in the spotlight again today with Snap ($0.22 vs street $0.10, up 44.9% premarket) and Pinterest ($0.49 vs street $0.45, up 12.8% premarket) soaring back from the pounding the sector took yesterday and indicating that Meta’s problems could be more company-specific rather than sector-wide.