Stock Futures Tick Higher After Days Of Pullback
Stock futures edge slightly higher on Wednesday morning, hoping to reverse the losses from the first half of the week. Stocks have slipped in September amid worries that markets are ripe for a pullback. After all, major indices have been marching higher for much of the year. The spread of the Delta variant and economic slowdown have all dampened the stock market sentiment. Of course, the August inflation numbers yesterday appear to be positive for investors. Yet, the uncertainty about the Fed's tapering of asset purchases could be the main reason stocks have been treading water as of late.
"The Federal Reserve will probably delay slowing its purchase of Treasury and mortgage-backed securities despite slight indications that the price increase in durable goods is transitory, as illustrated by the reduction in used car prices … This is because we are far from maximum employment," one of the Fed's two goals of its dual mandate.- Dawit Kebede, senior economist at Credit Union National Association.
Meanwhile, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) said it will conduct a share buyback program of up to $60 billion and raise its quarterly dividend by 11%. Moreover, Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) is also trending in the stock market today after the company unveiled its latest line of new products, including the iPhone 13. As of 7:01 a.m. ET, the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq futures are up by 0.06%, 0.14%, and 0.23% respectively.
JinkoSolar Remains Optimistic Despite Lackluster Earnings
Leading solar panel manufacturer, JinkoSolar's (NYSE: JKS) stock has generally had a good run since 2020. However, JKS stock has been under pressure as of late. This may be due to the solar import restrictions imposed by the United States. While that might seem as a headwind at first, it could actually be a tailwind because of the company's U.S. presence. As of right now, the company is one of the world's largest solar panel manufacturers.
The company announced its second-quarter earnings this morning. From its fiscal report, total revenues came in 6.2% lower year-over-year to RMB 7.93 billion (US$ 1.23 billion) while gross margin was 17.1%. Meanwhile, gross profit was RMB 1.36 billion (US$210.5 million). This represents an increase of 0.1% sequentially and decreases of 10.2% year over year. Despite the challenges posed by the novel coronavirus, the company remains optimistic about the global demand in the second half of 2021 and in 2022.
Also, JinkoSolar recently announced a strategic cooperation with Chinese battery technology company Contemporary Amperex Technology Co. Ltd (CATL). Under such an arrangement, both parties will join forces to carry out comprehensive and in-depth cooperation to develop the global solar-plus-storage market. With JinkoSolar's high-efficiency PV technology coupled with CATL's advanced patented technologies, many would-be paying attention to see what the duo can bring.
Crocs Stock Reaches Record High, Revenue Expected To Be More Than $5B By 2026
Popular casual footwear maker Crocs (NASDAQ: CROX) skyrocketed on Tuesday's intraday trading off the heels of an investor day. The company is remaking its footwear with a bio-based material as it aims to reduce its carbon footprint. The material, called Ecolibrium technology, was engineered in collaboration with global materials company Dow (NYSE: DOW). It is using a technology that Crocs says "transforms sustainably sourced waste and byproducts into a shoe that has all the comfort you expect from Crocs, but with far less carbon". The company plans to offer the new shoes globally beginning early next year.
It may be a challenge in balancing profitability. But Crocs is optimistic that its sustainability effort will do more than just bring in cleaner air. It is confident that it could also bring in cold hard cash. That's because the company believes a focus on sustainability will grow its clout with the valuable Gen Z demographic. However, CROX stocks didn't just hit a new high because of these social initiatives. In its second-quarter fiscal, revenue came in 93% higher over the prior-year period.
During the investor day, Crocs CFO Anne Mehlman mentioned that the company expects to pull in revenue over $5 billion in sales by 2026. It will also focus on expanding its reach in Asia and expanding its digital growth. What's more, Crocs intends to buy back an extra $500 million in CROX stock by the end of this year. That puts its repurchase program at $1 billion this year. All these are nothing but music to investors' ears.
Rivian To Be The First Automaker To Produce Electric Pickups
Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) backed EV start-up Rivian will be the first automaker to bring an electric pickup to the consumer market. Therefore, Rivian will overtake Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) and General Motors (NYSE: GM) in what's expected to be a highly competitive segment in the years ahead. General Motors plans to start production of its GMC Hummer EV truck out of its Factory Zero Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Center later this year. Meanwhile, Ford (NYSE: F) plans to start production in spring 2022 on the electric F-150 Lightning.
"After months of building pre-production vehicles, this morning our first customer vehicle drove off our production line in Normal! Our team's collective efforts have made this moment possible. Can't wait to get these into the hands of our customers!"- Rivian founder and CEO RJ Scaringe
This development came after the company announced its plan for IPO, just weeks ago. Rivian is aiming to fetch a valuation of roughly $70 billion, a person familiar with the matter said. Some investors, however, may be less enthusiastic about the electric vehicle market. After all, many of the top EV stocks have been trading sideways since earlier this year. That said, although the company may be entering a crowded field, its focus on electric pickups might set it apart from many other EV stocks.
Earnings Winding Down
Topping off all that, we also have several notable names reporting earnings today. Even as we approach the tail-end of this earnings season, investor hype around potentially good quarters persists. With the current earnings season largely in the rearview mirror, there are still companies reporting today. Some of the notable names reporting before the opening bell include JinkoSolar, Weber (NYSE: WEBR), Innate Pharma (NASDAQ: IPHA).
Skillsoft (NYSE: SKIL) was among the gainers in pre-market trading today. This came as it delivered double-digit bookings growth after the closing bell Tuesday. The company also raised its bookings and adjusted revenue guidance for the full year. All in all, whether it's rethinking your portfolio allocation amid market turbulence or going through earnings reports, there is enough to keep you busy in the stock market today.
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