Stocks set to open in the green
U.S. stock futures rose sharply to hit ‘limit up’ levels on Tuesday morning, after the Federal Reserve took several aggressive measures Monday to prevent the American economy from spiraling into a depression due to the novel coronavirus crisis.
The Fed said that it would make loans available to local governments and small and large businesses to help them pay bills and potentially avoid layoffs. It also plans to buy vast amounts of U.S. Treasury bonds and mortgage-backed securities to ensure debt markets will function.
“The coronavirus pandemic is causing tremendous hardship across the United States and around the world,” the central bank said in a statement.
Meanwhile, U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin both said that an agreement on the phase 3 economic package was very close.
Crude futures rise on Fed action, hopes of a joint U.S.-Saudi oil alliance
Crude futures were also higher early Tuesday, buoyed by the Federal Reserve’s latest stimulus measures amid the coronavirus pandemic. Prices were also supported by U.S. Energy Secretary Dan Brouillette’s remarks on Monday about the possibility of a joint U.S.-Saudi Arabia oil alliance.
Brouillette was quoted by Bloomberg as saying that forging an oil alliance between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia is of the “many, many ideas” being considered to boost prices as the price war launched by Saudi Arabia and Russia shows no sign of ending and the pandemic continues to hurt demand.
As of 6:00 a.m. ET, U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were up $1.43, or around 6.12%, at $24.79 per barrel. Global Brent crude oil futures were at $28.33 a barrel, up $1.30, or about 4.81%.
Twitter pulls quarterly guidance over coronavirus
Twitter (NYSE: TWTR) says it’s pulling its outlook for the first quarter of 2020 because of the “growing impact of COVID-19 on the global operating and economic environment and their effect on advertiser demand.”
The social media firm late Monday withdrew its revenue and operating income forecast for Q1, as well as with its full-year outlook for expenses, stock-based compensation, headcount and capital expenditures.
In a press release, Twitter said it expects first-quarter revenue “slightly down” on a year-over-year basis, and to incur a GAAP operating loss as reduced expenses are unlikely to fully offset the reduced level of revenue.
Twitter shares were up 4.09% to $25.70 apiece in premarket trade Tuesday.
Nike earnings on tap
On the earnings front, Nike (NYSE: NKE) is set to report its third-quarter 2020 financial results after the closing bell today. The Beaverton, Oregon-based company was among the first batch of retailers to close stores in because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, Wall Street expects the company to perform well in the long term as sportswear demand continues to remain high. For Q3, analysts project the sportswear giant will post quarterly earnings at $0.60 per share and sales of $9.84 billion.