5 things to know before the stock market opens Wednesday
Here are the most important news, trends and analysis that investors need to start their trading day:
- Stocks set to bounce after Tuesday's broad sell-off
- Yellen, Powell set for Day 2 of economic testimony
- GameStop sinks after acknowledgement of possible share sale
- Intel to build new chip plants; Amazon names new cloud chief
- Elon Musk says people can now buy a Tesla with bitcoin
1. Stocks set to bounce after Tuesday's broad sell-off
U.S. stock futures bounced Wednesday, especially Nasdaq futures, one day after a broad sell-off sent Wall Street lower. Investors grew concerned about Covid reopening plans as cases ticked higher in many U.S. states despite vaccinations. Germany and France are among the European nations tightening restrictions again as a new wave of infections sweeps a continent that's seen a sluggish vaccine rollout. The 10-year U.S. Treasury yield on Wednesday continued to back off last week's 14-month highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 on Tuesday each lost nearly 1%, while the Nasdaq lost more than 1%.
2. Yellen, Powell set for Day 2 of economic testimony
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell are set to deliver a second day of economic testimony to lawmakers as required quarterly by the March 2020 Covid relief act. They will appear remotely before the Senate Banking Committee at 10 a.m. ET. On Tuesday, they told the House Financial Services Committee that elevated asset valuations in pockets of the markets are not reasons for alarm yet. Yellen and Powell also said they're confident in the stability of the financial sector as the U.S. economy continues to recover from the pandemic.
3. GameStop sinks after acknowledgement of possible share sale
GameStop shares fell 12% in Wednesday's premarket after the company acknowledged in a filing that it's considering selling additional equity shares. The stock soared more than 2,400% in January's Reddit-fueled trading frenzy before crashing. It mounted a comeback in late February and earlier this month on hopes for a digital transformation. However, shares in recent days moved lower. After the closing bell Tuesday, GameStop missed on the top and bottom lines with quarterly results. But it did see e-commerce sales jump 175% for the quarter. The company also named former Amazon and Google executive Jenna Owens as its new chief operating officer.
4. Intel to build new chip plants; Amazon names new cloud chief
Dow stock Intel rose about 4% in premarket trading after the company said late Tuesday it will spend $20 billion to build two new semiconductor factories in Arizona. The announcement, coinciding with new CEO Pat Gelsinger's first public remarks since taking over the job, signals that Intel will continue to focus on manufacturing during industry shifts that have led competitors to increasingly separate chip design and chip fabrication.
Incoming Amazon CEO Andy Jassy, head of the company's cloud business for the past 15 years, revealed his Amazon Web Services successor in a memo to employees. Adam Selipsky, a former Amazon executive and currently CEO of Salesforce-owned data-visualization software maker Tableau, was chosen to run the AWS division.
5. Elon Musk says people can now buy a Tesla with bitcoin
Elon Musk announced late Tuesday that it's now possible to buy Tesla vehicles in the U.S. with bitcoin. "You can now buy a Tesla with Bitcoin," tweeted CEO Musk, who was also officially made the "Technoking of Tesla" this month. People outside the U.S. will be able to buy a Tesla with bitcoin "later this year," Musk said, without specifying which countries. The electric auto maker in February revealed it bought $1.5 billion worth of bitcoin. At the time, Tesla said it would soon start accepting the world's biggest and most popular cryptocurrency as a form of payment.
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