U.S. markets are looking for another day of gains amid a recent string of record highs, though, things got off to a bad start, plus stocks to watch today in the Money and Markets Wall Street Wake-Up.

The Market Open

U.S. markets were subdued following Monday’s open.

As of 9:45 a.m. Eastern Time, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.2% while the S&P 500 opened down 0.2%. the Nasdaq also opened down (0.3%).

Despite the light trading to open, more gains may be on the horizon after the South China Morning Post reported Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, the nation’s top trade negotiator, will visit Washington this week to sign “phase one” of a trade agreement between China and the United States.

The Opening Bell

Stocks are attempting another rally Monday as market futures ticked slightly upward.

As of 9 a.m. EST, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.1%, as was the S&P 500 and Nasdaq in premarket trading.

Stocks to Watch Today

AstraZeneca PLC (NYSE: AZN) —  The biopharmaceutical company received Food and Drug Administration approval for its Lynparza drug to be a first-line treatment for pancreatic cancer.

Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. (Nasdaq: GT) — The tire manufacturing company is up 2.7% in premarket trading after being rated a “buy” by Nomura/Instinet.

Lendingtree Inc. (Nasdaq: TREE) — The online lender’s stock is up more than 1% in premarket trading Monday after Compass Point analyst Chris Gamaitoni upgraded the company to “buy.”

In the News

Minimum wage is going up in 24 states and 48 cities and counties starting in 2020, according to the National Employment Law Project.

According to the report, 20 states and 26 cities will see their minimum wage go up on Jan. 1, while four more states and 23 cities and counties will go up later in the year.

Japan’s Benchmark Stock Index Closes Out 2019 Strong

The Nikkei 225 may have been down 0.8% at its close Monday, but its overall gains in 2019 made it one of the best performing indices in Asia, according to CNN Business.

The index is up 18% for the year, second in annual gains to China’s Shanghai Composite, which is up 22% with one more trading day left before 2020. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index is up 9.6% and South Korea’s Kospi has increased 7.7% in 2019.

Bitcoin Believers See 2020 Rally

Thanks to the coming halving, Bitcoin investors see 2020 as a year for potential big gains for the cryptocurrency, according to Bloomberg.

On or around May 18, the reward Bitcoin miners get for creating new Bitcoins will be cut in half. The last two times halving has happened — 2012 and 2016 — Bitcoin gained between 2,200% and 8,200%.

Other Morning Reads

2 Quick and Easy Social Security Resolutions for 2020 (Money & Markets)

Tesla Just Delivered Its First China-Built Cars in Shanghai (Bloomberg)

It’s Going Well for Tesla, But It Won’t Last (Money & Markets)

Earnings Report

Here are the companies releasing earnings reports today:


Chart of the Day

tech booms of the new decade

A study from IDC suggests global annual artificial intelligence revenue will grow to $98.4 billion in 2023, while BloombergNEF thinks there will be 10 million electric vehicles sold by 2025.

It’s all part of the coming tech booms in the next decade.

In addition to AI and electric vehicles, a study by Ericsson found that smartphones with a 5G mobile subscription will shoot up 30.1% from 2020 to 2025.

The Wake-Up will be off Tuesday, Dec. 31 and return Thursday, Jan. 2. Check back each morning before the opening bell for stocks to watch today with the Wall Street Wake-Up, here on Money and Markets.