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What to Watch Today: Wall Street Looks Steady After S&P 500 Saw 5-Day Win Streak

Carlo Allegri | Reuters

BY THE NUMBERS

U.S. stock futures were flat Wednesday as corporate earnings continue to dominate investors' attention. More than 70 of the S&P 500 companies report this week, including Dow stock Verizon before the bell and Dow stock IBM after the close. Tesla is also scheduled to deliver quarterly numbers after the bell. In Wednesday's premarket trading, Netflix shares fell and United Airlines stock rose after issuing financial results late Tuesday. (CNBC)

* Verizon adds more Q3 postpaid subscribers than expected on 5G strength (Reuters)

The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq on Tuesday both extended their winning streaks to five sessions. The Dow also advanced, logging its third gain in the past four sessions. The 10-year Treasury yield hit 1.67% late Tuesday night, retracing highs back to mid-May. The yield, which moves inversely to price, was slightly below that level Wednesday. U.S. oil prices fell to around $82 per barrel but still hovered around seven-year highs. (CNBC & Reuters)

Bitcoin was steady Wednesday, trading around $63,800, only about 1.5% below its April all-time high, one day after the first U.S. bitcoin-linked exchange-traded fund launched. The ProShares Bitcoin Strategy ETF, ticker BITO, jumped 4.8% on Tuesday. The fund tracks CME bitcoin futures, or contracts speculating on the future price of bitcoin, rather than the cash price. Bitcoin ran up ahead of the ETF's debut, rebounding from a summer slump that saw the cryptocurrency briefly go below $29,000. (CNBC)

IN THE NEWS TODAY

Netflix reported quarterly earnings of $3.19 per share, beating estimates of $2.56. Revenue of $7.48 billion matched forecasts. Netflix added 4.4 million new subscribers during the third quarter, exceeding expectations. The streaming giant did not alter its 8.5 million global subscriber forecast for the fourth quarter despite the popularity of "Squid Game" which could boost those numbers. (CNBC)

United Airlines reported a smaller-than-expected adjusted loss of $1.02 per share for the third quarter. Revenue of $7.75 billion was also better than estimates. United said the spread of the delta variant of Covid has slowed but not derailed its recovery. The airline didn't give a timeline for when it would return to profitability. (CNBC)

Novavax's stock lost about a quarter of its value in Wednesday's premarket trading following a Politico report saying the biotech company was having trouble meeting FDA quality standards for its Covid vaccine. Novavax said that in response to a recent news article citing anonymous sources that it confirms its confidence in its ability to deliver its vaccine.

* White House announces plan to distribute Covid vaccine to kids age 5 to 11 as soon as it’s authorized (CNBC)

New York City announced Wednesday an expansion of its Covid vaccine mandate to all public employees, taking away the option to test out. Democratic Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement the order applies to more than 160,000 city workers, including police officers and firefighters. It requires workers to have at least one shot by Nov. 1 or be placed on unpaid leave. About 71% of them are already at least partially vaccinated.

* UK doctors call for urgent return of Covid restrictions as new mutation monitored (CNBC)
* Amazon is offering $4,000 bonuses to lure UK workers as Britain faces labor crunch (CNBC)
* Panic ordering by retailers is making the supply chain crisis ‘even worse’ (CNBC)

Facebook (FB), under fire from regulators and lawmakers over its business practices, is planning to rebrand itself with a new group name that focuses on the metaverse, The Verge reported on Tuesday. The name change will be announced next week, The Verge reported, citing a source with direct knowledge of the matter.

* Alibaba surges after Jack Ma appears in Europe, company releases new chip (CNBC)

The select committee investigating the deadly Capitol riot voted last night to advance criminal contempt proceedings for Steve Bannon after the onetime advisor to former President Donald Trump refused to comply with a subpoena. The unanimous vote sends the resolution to the full House for consideration. (CNBC)

STOCKS TO WATCH

Anthem (ANTM) reported adjusted quarterly profit of $6.79 per share, beating the $6.37 per share consensus estimate from Refinitiv, with revenue also topping forecasts. The health insurer also raised its full-year outlook amid higher premiums for its Medicare and Medicaid businesses. 

Biogen (BIIB) rose 2.2% in the premarket after the company beat estimates on the top and bottom lines and raised its full year forecast. The company is still optimistic about prospects for its Alzheimer's drug Aduhelm, despite slower than expected adoption.

Winnebago (WGO) beat estimates by 56 cents with adjusted quarterly earnings of $2.57 per share, while revenue exceeded estimates as well. Results were helped by strong consumer demand, which allowed the company to raise prices amid higher input costs. Winnebago added 2.4% in premarket trading.

Canadian National Railway (CNI) CEO Jean-Jacques Ruest will retire at the end of January. Investors had been calling for his exit after the company's failed bid for Kansas City Southern (KSU). The stock rallied 3.3% in the premarket.

Brinker International (EAT) said its profit margins have been dented by higher labor and commodities costs. The parent of Chili's and other restaurant chains said the surge in the Covid delta variant exacerbated those issues. Brinker tumbled 13.7% in premarket trading.

WD-40 (WDFC) slumped 11% in the premarket after the lubricant maker reported a lower-than-expected profit and revenue for its latest quarter. CEO Garry Ridge said the pandemic had created abnormal swings in the company's sales results.

Tegna (TGNA) gained 1.2% in premarket trading following a Bloomberg report that media mogul Byron Allen has received additional backing for his $23 per share offer for the TV broadcasting company. 

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