The renewed strength of the coronavirus in Europe has led to a cascade of financial consequences. Bond yields have retreated on the grounds that inflationary expectations have diminished and central banks may have to revise their support reduction schedules. Online retailers have rallied. The dollar continues to shine and oil is down.
On Friday, indexes ended lower as a result. They are in better shape this morning, even if volatility has risen a notch. Any restriction on further economic growth is, logically, a negative signal for the corporate outlook.
It is the week of Thanksgiving, on Thursday. Wall Street will be closed on Thursday and will only open for half a session on Friday, often with ultra-clearances. The Friday after Thanksgiving is an opportunity for Americans to do their first Christmas shopping. It has been called "Black Friday" for more than half a century, with brands competing with promotions to attract consumers.
Why is this important for investors? Black Friday sales are tracked by a swarm of specialized firms, which have made it an indicator of the year-end consumer trend. Stock markets like high spending, a sign that households are confident and businesses will benefit. This year, consumer savings are at record levels and the only real downside is shortages. Paradoxically, this could boost premature purchases and benefit Black Friday.
This week, November's PMI activity indicators will be closely scrutinized on Tuesday, as well as US PCE inflation, due on Wednesday.
Economic highlights of the day:
There will be no major indicators today.
The dollar/euro pair is little changed at EUR 0.8867. Gold has lost some altitude to return to around USD 1841 per ounce. Oil, after its sharp fall at the end of last week, rebounds timidly to USD 78.62 for Brent and USD 75.80 for WTI. Bond yields fell sharply, to 1.56% for the US 10-year and -0.35% for the German Bund on the same maturity. The French OAT is back to 0. Bitcoin fell below USD 58,000.
* Tesla CEO Elon Musk said Friday night that the auto company's app is back online after a server outage that left many drivers unable to log into their cars. Elon Musk also wrote on Twitter on Monday that the group's Model S Plaid, a version with a top speed of up to 200 miles per hour, could be released in China around March. The stock is up 2.8% in pre-market trading.
* Pfizer, BioNTech, Moderna - U.S. regulators have extended the administration of booster doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to all fully vaccinated adults.
* KKR - Telecom Italia (TIM) announced Sunday that its board of directors had considered a non-binding $12 billion offer from U.S. fund KKR to take the telecom operator private.
* Vonage - Swedish telecom equipment maker Ericsson announced Monday that it is buying the U.S. cloud computing specialist for $6.2 billion (€5.5 billion). In pre-market trading, Vonage's shares soared 26.5 percent to $20.7, an all-time high.
* Apollo Global Management - The U.S. investment fund is interested in British retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S), the Sunday Times reported Sunday.
* Monster Beverage, which specializes in energy drinks, is discussing a merger with Constellation Brands, a group specializing in the production and distribution of alcohol, a source close to the matter told Reuters on Sunday. The two groups have a combined market capitalization of about $92 billion.
* Delta Air Lines, United Airlines Holding - The two U.S. airlines said they were preparing for up to 5.6 million and 4.5 million passengers, respectively, from Nov. 26-30 for Thanksgiving. The U.S. Transportation Security Agency (TSA) expects about 20 million travelers by air during this period compared to nearly 26 million before the health crisis.
* Uber Eats, the meal delivery division of the U.S. company, has partnered with distributor Tokyo Smoke to allow consumers to purchase cannabis online in Ontario, Canada. It's the first time ever that a delivery service has entered this market, an Uber spokesperson said.
* Activision Blizzard - Bobby Kotick, the video game publisher's chief executive, said Sunday that he would not rule out resigning if he could not quickly resolve the problems related to the sexual abuse accusations against his group, the Wall Street Journal reported Sunday, citing sources close to the case. The stock is down 1.1% in pre-market trading.
* The Carlyle Group - The U.S. private equity group, a 27.6% shareholder in Madero, will inject an additional 300 million reais into the Brazilian fast-food chain via the acquisition of 2.4 million additional shares, a stock market report shows.
- Activision Blizzard: MKM Partners cut the recommendation to sell from neutral. PT down 13% to $54
- Alnylam: RBC Capital Markets upgrades to outperform from sector perform. PT rises 24% to $225
- Amgen: Mizuho Securities cuts price target to $194 from $222, citing 'potential 2022 headwinds,' says 'valuations could be even lower;' neutral rating kept
- Blink Charging: Cowen cuts blink charging to market perform from outperform, price target to $40 from $41
- Ebay: Goldman Sachs reinstates ebay at neutral with $84 price target
- Equifax: Exane BNP Paribas cut the recommendation to neutral from outperform. PT up 0.4% to $290
- FirstGroup: Jefferies remains at hold with target raised from GBp 65 to GBp 90.
- IonQ: Goldman Sachs starts ionq at neutral with $28 price target
- Kimco: Stifel upgrades to buy from hold. PT up 13% to $27
- National Express: Jefferies remains Buy with a reduced target of GBP 320 to GBP 300.
- Stagecoach: Jefferies remains Buy with target raised from GBp 90 to GBp 110.
- The Go-Ahead: Jefferies remains long with a target cut from GBp 1,300 to GBp 1,160.
- VMware: DA Davidson lowers price target to $166 from $185, buy/add rating reiterated
- Xcel Energy: BMO Capital Markets raised the recommendation to outperform from market perform. PT up 7.5% to $70