Wall Street futures soar as traders await Biden’s Fed pick

Wall Street

Stocks poised to start the week on a positive note

U.S. stock futures edged higher early Monday, as market participants watched for an announcement from President Joe Biden on his choice for the next Fed chair.

Biden hinted early last week that he would reveal his nomination for the next chair with “four days,” but his administration later pushed that timeline to “around Thanksgiving,”

Wall Street expects current chair Jerome Powell to be reappointed for a second term, but there are also expectations that Biden could choose Fed Governor Lael Brainard for the position.

Traders are also keeping an eye on the earnings season, which is in its final round.

Some of the companies scheduled to report today include Zoom Video Communications (NASDAQ: ZM), Urban Outfitters (NASDAQ: URBN), and Spire (NYSE:SR).

As of 5:40 a.m. ET, futures tied to the blue-chip Dow Jones were indicated 133 points, or 0.37% to 35,682.

S&P 500 futures gained 16.25 points, or 0.35% to 4,710.75 while the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 futures rose 61.5 points, or 0.37% to 16,636.50.

Vonage shares surge 26% after agreeing to be bought by Ericsson for $6.2 billion

Vonage (NASDAQ: VG) shares are soaring after Ericsson said it would buy the cloud communications firm for $21 per share in cash, which is a 28% premium to Friday’s close.

Ericsson said the acquisition underlines the Swedish telecoms-equipment maker’s strategy to broaden its global offerings and expand its presence in wireless enterprise.

Vonage’s board of directors has unanimously approved the deal, according to a press release published on Monday.

The cloud-based Vonage has over 120,000 customers and more than one million registered developers globally.

As of writing, Vonage stock was marked $4.33, or 26.45% to $20.70 per share in the pre-market trading session Monday.

Authentic Brands shelves IPO, to sell stake

Brand licensing conglomerate Authentic Brands Group has reportedly postponed its initial public offering, putting on hold one of the most anticipated transactions of its kind scheduled this year.

According to a CNBC report, Authentic Brands will instead sell private shares worth $12.7 billion to a pool of existing investors, and private equity firm CVC Capital and hedge fund HPS Investment Partners.

The company submitted its IPO paperwork with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in early July, but has now stated that it won’t be revisiting the plan until about 2023 or 2024.

“The IPO climate is ridiculous. I think we would have gotten a massive valuation … maybe even more than what we sold the business for. But guess what? I’d rather be private,” Authentic Brands CEO Jamie Salter in a phone interview, according to the report.