Landon Capital

Futures Hold Steady, Heading for Positive Quarterly Outcome

Trading in U.S. stock futures remained steady on Thursday, signaling a potential continuation of the positive trend as the quarter draws to a close. This marks the second consecutive quarter of gains and the fifth consecutive month of growth, setting a promising tone ahead of the release of significant economic data.

As of 05:15 ET (09:15 GMT), the Dow futures showed marginal movement, while S&P 500 futures dipped by 0.1%, and Nasdaq 100 futures saw a slight decline of 0.1%.

Wednesday saw the major indices closing higher, with the S&P 500 reaching a record high, the Dow Jones Industrial Average experiencing its best day of the year, and the Nasdaq Composite also rising.

For the quarter, the S&P 500 is up by 10%, marking its strongest first-quarter performance since 2019. Similarly, the DJIA is showing a gain of 5.5%, its best since 2021, while the Nasdaq has climbed over 9%.

Economic data scheduled for release on Thursday includes weekly jobless claims, fourth-quarter gross domestic product figures, and Michigan consumer sentiment. However, all eyes are on Friday’s release of the Fed’s core personal consumption expenditures price index, coinciding with Good Friday when the market will be closed.

In corporate updates, premarket trading saw RH (NYSE:RH) stock surging over 9% following reports of robust demand for its new product catalog, despite fourth-quarter results falling short of expectations due to adverse weather conditions and shipping delays.

Take-Two Interactive Software (NASDAQ:TTWO) announced late Wednesday its intention to bolster its video game portfolio through the acquisition of U.S. game developer Gearbox Entertainment for $460 million.

This move, aimed at acquiring Gearbox from Sweden’s Embracer Group (ST:EMBRACb), will grant Take-Two access to the acclaimed “Borderlands” series, one of Gearbox’s most successful franchises with nearly 80 million copies sold.

Take-Two also revealed ongoing development efforts for the next installment in the Borderlands series, highlighting the strategic importance of this acquisition. However, attention remains focused on the highly anticipated release of the next iteration of the “Grand Theft Auto” franchise in 2025, following the monumental success of GTA 5.

The acquisition is slated to conclude in the first quarter of Take-Two’s fiscal year 2025.

Over a year since UBS (SIX:UBSG) agreed to acquire Credit Suisse, the move appears to have significantly benefited UBS, evident in its over 50% increase in share price.

CEO Sergio Ermotti, leading UBS through this transformative phase, received substantial compensation in 2023 following the takeover. However, UBS revealed in its annual report on Thursday that it is still in the process of reviewing potential misstatements in Credit Suisse’s financial reports, acknowledging the risk of overlooking “material errors.”

Credit Suisse’s acknowledgment of a “material weakness” in its financial reporting underscores the significance of the ongoing review, given the potential implications for the bank’s stability.

Global equity markets are poised to conclude the first quarter of 2024 on a positive note, buoyed by expectations of forthcoming rate cuts from major central banks and the resulting economic stimulus.

Both Wall Street’s S&P 500 index and Europe’s STOXX 600 index are approaching record levels, reflecting investor optimism. This optimism has translated into a surge in global mergers and acquisitions following a subdued period in 2023.

Data from Dealogic indicates a 30% increase in total M&A volumes globally, reaching approximately $755.1 billion in the first quarter, with notable growth in transactions exceeding $10 billion.

The bulk of M&A activity has been concentrated in the U.S. and Europe, with U.S. M&A volumes up by 59% and European deals increasing by 64%. In contrast, Asia Pacific volumes experienced a 40% decline.

Some of the largest transactions of the quarter include Capital One’s $35.3 billion acquisition of Discover Financial, Synopsys’ $35 billion deal to acquire Ansys, and Diamondback Energy’s $26 billion merger with Endeavor Energy.

Oil prices saw an uptick on Thursday, signaling a strong start to the opening quarter, driven by expectations of tightening supplies amid reduced Russian production.

As of 05:15 ET, U.S. crude futures rose by 0.4% to $81.66 a barrel, while the Brent contract climbed 0.3% to $85.64 per barrel. These gains position both contracts for significant quarterly growth, with increases ranging between 11% and 14% over the past three months.

Factors contributing to this upward trajectory include ongoing production curbs by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, particularly Russia, which recently announced deeper production cuts. Additionally, disruptions to Russian fuel refineries resulting from attacks by Ukraine have further tightened supply outlooks.

Analysts from JPMorgan anticipate the possibility of Brent oil prices reaching $90 in April, with projections nearing $100 by September. However, potential challenges lie ahead for the U.S. amidst concerns over high gasoline prices, particularly in the lead-up to the 2024 Presidential elections.

Ree Automotive Holding Falls Short of Analyst Expectations in Q4, Revenue Misses Estimates

Ree Automotive Holding (NASDAQ: REE) disclosed a fourth-quarter EPS of $-3.15, falling short of the analyst forecast by $0.96, which was projected at $-2.19. Quarterly revenue stood at $230K, notably lower than the consensus estimate of $1.14M.

Closing at $5.84, Ree Automotive Holding’s stock price exhibited a 13.62% increase over the past three months but faced a decline of -42.75% over the last year.

In the previous 90 days, Ree Automotive Holding experienced no positive EPS revisions but saw one negative EPS revision. For a detailed history of Ree Automotive Holding’s stock price reactions to earnings, refer to the provided link.

Investing on a Thursday is like ordering dessert before the main course—it’s a bold move that shows you’re not afraid to indulge in potential gains. While others might be stuck in the midweek slump, you’re seizing the opportunity to sweeten your portfolio. Who knows, maybe Thursday will be the day your investments rise to the occasion and leave everyone else drooling with envy. So, grab your financial fork and dig in—Thursdays are for the savvy investors with a taste for success.