Here are the top news, trends, and analysis investors need to get their trading day started:
1. Wall Street shows the best week since November
Traders work on the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
US stock futures rose on Friday as government employment growth in January was in line with expectations. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq both rose more than 1% on Thursday to close record highs as a better-than-expected weekly jobless claims report helped improve sentiment. Thursday’s Dow Jones Industrial Average was also up 1%, or 332 points, but remained about 0.4% off its January 20th high. Before trading on Wall Street on Friday, the Dow was up nearly 3.6%. the S&P 500 gained more than 4.2%; and the Nasdaq rose over 5.4%. All three stock benchmarks had their best weeks since November.
2. Employment growth recovered in January
A worker welds a structural steel beam during production at SME Steel Contractors’ facility in West Jordan, Utah on February 1, 2021.
George Frey | Bloomberg | Getty Images
The Labor Department on Friday reported an addition of 49,000 non-farm payrolls for January, which is largely in line with estimates. The country’s unemployment rate fell to 6.3%. The economy saw monthly job losses for the first time since April in December as rising Covid-19 cases and increased virus-fighting efforts took their toll. The December deficit was further reduced to 227,000 jobs.
3. Democrats are pushing the Covid incentive without Republicans
President Joe Biden speaks with State Department officials on his first visit to Washington, DC on February 4, 2021.
Saul Loeb | AFP | Getty Images
The Senate passed a budget resolution early Friday as the Democrats pushed ahead with the process of passing a $ 1.9 trillion coronavirus aid package based on President Joe Biden’s blueprint by partisan lines. Biden has said he hopes to strike a deal with the Republicans on Covid Incentives, but the Democrats are taking steps to get the bill passed by budget vote, which means they wouldn’t need GOP votes.
4. J&J seeks FDA emergency for Covid vaccine
Artur Widak | NurPhoto | Getty Images
Johnson & Johnson filed for emergency approval with the FDA for its one-time coronavirus vaccine after data was released last week showing it was about 66% effective. If the application is approved by J&J, this will be the third Covid vaccine approved for emergency use in the US after the two-shot vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna. The FDA’s Vaccine Advisory Board will review J & J’s candidate on Feb.26.
5. GameStop hops after another jump
Jakub Porzycki / NurPhoto via Getty Images
GameStop shares rose slightly on the Friday before going public, a day after they closed another 42% when online broker Robinhood lifted trading restrictions on the video game maker’s shares and other Reddit short squeeze names. GameStop’s closing price of $ 53.50 per share on Thursday was a more than 83% drop from last week’s closing price of $ 325. During the week’s 400% gain, stocks hit an all-time high of $ 483 each on Jan. 28.
The GameStop mania may not have been the retailer rebellion seen after multiple data points that institutional investors are citing as big drivers of the wildly moving up prices. It’s possible that the noise on social media has overlooked Wall Street the most by co-opting that trade to make quick money too, data also shows.
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