U.S. stock index futures extended declines a day after the Federal Reserve’s economic forecast confirmed the economy will feel the pain of the outbreak for years to come, plus stocks to watch today in the Money & Markets Opening Bell.
The Top Story
The S&P 500 and the Dow Jones ended lower on Wednesday as Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell acknowledged it could take years for the millions of people laid off due to COVID-19, to get back to work.
The U.S. central bank reiterated its pledge to provide years of extraordinary support to the economy battered by the pandemic.
The VIX volatility index briefly crossed 30 points for the first time since June 1. New infections are rising slightly in the United States after five weeks of declines as commerce and movement picks up across the country, a Reuters tally showed.
Investors are also weighing in the latest unemployment benefits report from the Department of Labor that’s expected to show another 1.5 million Americans filed for jobless claims for the week ending June 6.
As of 9:20 a.m. EDT, Dow Jones futures dropped 3.4%. S&P 500 futures fell 2.6% and Nasdaq futures moved 1.5% lower.
Stocks to Watch Today
Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) — The mass media and theme park operator said it plans to open its California theme parks in July with precautions in place. It plans to space out the openings of its Disneyland park, hotels and shopping district beginning July 7. Shares of Disney were down nearly 3%.
GrubHub Inc. (NYSE: GRUB) — Shares of the food ordering and delivery company jumped 10.5% on news it has reached a deal with Netherlands-based Just Eat Takeaway to merge (see below). The all-stock deal is reportedly worth $7.3 billion.
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Nasdaq: REGN) — The American pharmaceutical company said it has started human trials of its COVID-19 vaccine. It said it should know within a month whether the treatment is effective. Shares of Regeneron were up 2.7%.
Report: Amazon Looking at Antitrust Charges In EU
As early as next week the European Union will file charges against Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN) over the company’s alleged treatment of third-party sellers.
According to The Wall Street Journal, the charges stem from Amazon’s dual role as a marketplace and a seller of its own products. The EU contends Amazon is scooping data from third-party sellers and using that data to compete against them.
If the European Commission finds Amazon guilty of the charges, it could levy a fine as high as 10% of Amazon’s annual revenue, according to the report.
Brexit Returns to Forefront as the U.K. Emerges From Lockdown
Remember Brexit — the U.K.’s divorce from the rest of the European Union?
As Great Britain slowly emerges from a three-month coronavirus lockdown, the process of leaving the EU is back with growing fears of a “no-deal” scenario at the end of the year, according to CNBC.
Trade talks between the U.K. and EU have yielded very little in the way of progress as differences over fishing rights, taxation and rules on state aid continue to be unresolved.
Uber Loses Out on GrubHub
It seemed as if the race to acquire dining delivery provider GrubHub Inc. (NYSE: GRUB) just had one player — Uber Technologies Inc. (NYSE: UBER).
But that doesn’t’ seem to be the case as Netherlands-based Just Eat Takeaway.com confirmed on Wednesday it has struck a $7.3 billion all-stock deal to merge with GrubHub.
The merger is subject to approval by each company’s shareholders and is expected to be complete in early 2021. Shares of GrubHub jumped 7.1% in premarket trading.
What We’re Reading
Buyer Beware: Millennials Are About to Learn They Know Nothing About Stocks (Money & Markets)
NetEase Shares Pop 8% in Hong Kong Debut (CNN Business)
The Bull & The Bear: Dispelling, Confirming Myths and Truths About Crypto (Money & Markets)
Here are the companies releasing earnings reports today:
Adobe Inc. (Nasdaq: ADBE)
Lululemon Athletica Inc. (Nasdaq: LULU)
PVH Corp. (NYSE: PVH)
SeaChange International (Nasdaq: SEAC)
Zedge Inc. (NYSE: ZDGE)
Check back each morning before the opening bell for stocks to watch today with Opening Bell, here on Money & Markets.