Here are five things you must know for Wednesday, Feb. 3:
1. — Stock Futures Edge Higher After Amazon and Alphabet Earnings
Stock futures edge higher Wednesday with Nasdaq futures rising the most after tech giants Amazon.com (AMZN) – Get Report and Alphabet (GOOGL) – Get Report posted strong earnings that impressed investors.
Contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 30 points, S&P 500 futures gained 13 points and Nasdaq futures were up 87 points. Stocks finished sharply higher on Tuesday.
The retail frenzy in stocks such as GameStop (GME) – Get Report and AMC Entertainment (AMC) – Get Report subsided further. Shares of GameStop, the video game retailer, were rising about 9% in premarket trading Wednesday after falling 60% in the previous session.
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has summoned officials from the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Reserve, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to discuss the recent market volatility driven by retail trading in stocks like GameStop.
President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion stimulus package, meanwhile, was being pushed through by Democrats without Republican support.
2. — Amazon’s Earnings Smash Estimates and Jeff Bezos Steps Down
Shares of Amazon were up slightly in premarket trading after the company reported quarterly sales of more than $100 billion for the first time and founder Jeff Bezos said he will step down as CEO during the third quarter.
Andy Jassy, the head of Amazon’s cloud computing division, will take over day-to-day control of Amazon. Bezos will become executive chairman.
“Right now I see Amazon at its most inventive ever, making it an optimal time for this transition,” said Bezos in a statement.
“Amazon will miss the leadership of an entrepreneurial icon like Bezos, but we have the upmost confidence in Jassy and this change in leadership,” said Jim Cramer and the Action Alerts PLUS team, which holds Amazon in its portfolio.
Amazon announced the transition Tuesday at the same time it posted fourth-quarter earnings of $7.2 billion, or $14.09 a share, that smashed analysts’ forecasts and revenue of $125.55 billion that beat estimates of $119.72 billion. Earnings set a record for the third consecutive quarter.
Amazon said it expects sales in the fiscal first quarter of $100 billion to $106 billion, up from $75.45 billion in the first quarter of 2019.
The stock rose 0.21% to $3,387.01 in premarket trading.
3. — Alphabet Surges as Quarterly Ad Revenue Soars to $46 Billion
Alphabet shares stormed higher Wednesday after the parent company of Google reported fourth-quarter earnings that easily topped Wall Street estimates.
The stock gained 7.45% to $2,062.05 in premarket trading Wednesday.
Earnings were $22.30 a share vs. year-earlier profit of $15.35. Revenue minus traffic-acquisition costs was $46.43 billion, up from $46.08 billion a year…
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