5 issues to know earlier than the inventory market opens Friday, Might 21

Here are the most important news, trends and analysis that investors need to start their trading day:

1. Stocks set for more gains after halting 3-day losing streak

Traders working at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), on May 19, 2021.


U.S. stock futures pointed to a second straight day of gains on Wall Street, one day after a rebound rally halted a three-session losing streak. The Nasdaq on Thursday shot up nearly 1.8%, pulling the tech-heavy index into positive territory for the week. Ahead of Friday trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 were still lower for the week, despite Thursday’s more than 0.5% and 1% respective advances. Tesla, chip stocks and other speculative names, which took big hits in the previous session, bounced back Thursday as bitcoin prices recovered.

2. Bitcoin hovers above $40,000 after a wild week

A representations of virtual currency Bitcoin is seen in front of a stock graph in this illustration taken May 19, 2021.

Dado Ruvic | Reuters

Bitcoin traded above $40,000 on Friday as the bounce-back rally in the world’s biggest cryptocurrency by market value stabilized following Wednesday’s collapse to three month lows near $30,000. Keeping a lid on gains was concern about U.S. calls for stricter cryptocurrency compliance with the IRS. The Treasury Department on Thursday announced steps to require any transfer worth $10,000 or more to be reported to the IRS. At this week’s lows, bitcoin dropped more than 50% from April’s all-time highs near $65,000.

3. U.S. proposes global minimum corporate tax rate floor of 15%

Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen speaks during a daily news briefing at the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House May 7, in Washington, DC.

Alex Wong | Getty Images

The Biden administration is proposing a global minimum corporate tax rate of 15%. However, the Treasury Department said Thursday the final rate could go even higher, calling 15% a “floor and that discussions should continue to be ambitious and push that rate higher.” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who was Jerome Powell’s predecessor as Federal Reserve chair, has said that establishing a global minimum rate would help halt the “race to the bottom” globally for tax rates.

4. Apple CEO Tim Cook set to testify in Epic Games case

CEO Tim Cook speaks at an Apple event at the company’s headquarters in Cupertino, California, September 10, 2019.

Stephen Lam | Reuters

Apple CEO Tim Cook is set to take the witness stand Friday to defend the company’s App Store against charges that it has grown into an illegal monopoly. Apple is counting on Cook’s appearance to put the finishing touches on the company’s defense against an antitrust case brought by Fortnite maker Epic Games. Epic claims Apple’s App Store has morphed into a price-gouging vehicle, reaping 15% to 30% commissions from in-app transactions and blocking apps from offering other payment alternatives.

5. Tesla raises prices for fifth time in last few months

Tesla’s Model Y compact crossover vehicles at a showroom in Shanghai, China, on January 18, 2021.

VCG | Visual China Group | Getty Images

Tesla hiked prices on its Model 3s and Model Ys for the fifth time in the last few months, according to EV news site Electrek. The Model 3 Standard Range Plus and Model 3 Long Range AWD went up $500, starting now at $39,490 and $48,490, respectively. The Model Y Long Range AWD also went up $500, starting now at $51,490. No reason was given for the increases. Prices were not raised on the Model 3 Performance and the Model Y Performance vehicles.

— The Associated Press contributed to this report. Follow all the market action like a pro on CNBC Pro. Get the latest on the pandemic with CNBC’s coronavirus coverage.

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