Stock futures trade lower ahead of Powell, Yellen testimonies

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Wall Street

Eyes on Powell, Yellen testimonies

U.S. stock futures tilted lower on Tuesday morning as market participants awaited Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen to begin two days of congressional testimonies assessing the economic policy response to the coronavirus pandemic.

According to prepared remarks released Monday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell will tell lawmakers that the economic recovery from the pandemic has progressed more quickly than projected, but the central bank doesn’t plan to give up on its support measures.

By 5:15 a.m. ET, futures ted to the blue-chip Dow were indicated 93 points, or 0.29% lower to 32,526. S&P 500 futures dropped 11.12 points, or 0.28% to 3,918.88 while the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 futures gave away 20.5, or 0.16% to 13,051.25.

Microsoft said to be in talks to acquire Discord for more than $10 billion

Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) is in talks to acquire video-game chat startup Discord for more than $10 billion, according to a Tuesday report by Bloomberg News.

People familiar with the matter told the news outlet that no deal is imminent and Discord is holding talks with other potential buyers and could still opt to avoid a sale and go public.

Discord, a platform popular with gamers and many other groups, raised $100 million at a valuation of $7 billion in December.

Users of the platform form groups called servers that consist of communities or friends dedicated to topics such as games or cryptocurrency. Most of the servers are invite-only and users can chat by text, video or audio.

Compass to offer 36 million shares in IPO at price of $23-$26 each

Real estate brokerage firm Compass announced in a filing early Tuesday that it aims to raise up to $936 million in its IPO, by offering 36 million shares at a price range of $23-$26.

The company, which is backed by Japanese conglomerate SoftBank Group, plans to list its stock on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “COMP.”

Founded in 2012, Compass runs an integrated software platform that serves real estate agents in the residential market.

In its filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, the company said Robert Reffkin, its founder and CEO would still hold roughly 45.7% of its total voting power after the offering, while SoftBank’ Vision Fund would still hold 18.5%.

Crude tumbles as European nations tighten coronavirus restrictions

In commodities, crude futures fell on Tuesday morning after several countries in Europe tightened their coronavirus restrictions amid surging cases.

German authorities have extended their lockdown measures by another month and announced several new restrictions in a bid to bring down the rate of Covid-19 infections.

Meanwhile, any persona attempting to leave the United Kingdom to travel abroad without “good reason” could face a £5,000 fine ($6,900) under new coronavirus laws that will come into force next week.

By 5:15 a.m. ET, U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were down $1.07, or 1.74% to $60.49 a barrel. International Brent crude futures were at $63.45, down $1.17, or 1.81% a barrel.

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