Stocks set for records as Biden speaks with China’s Xi

FAN Editor

U.S. stock futures were pointing to record highs at Thursday’s opening bell after President Biden held his first call with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

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“President Biden affirmed his priorities of protecting the American people’s security, prosperity, health, and way of life, and preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific,” the White House said.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures gained 68 points, or 0.22%, while S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq Composite futures were higher by 0.32% and 0.44%, respectively. The Dow finished at a record high on Wednesday while the S&P and the Nasdaq ended just below their own peaks.


In stocks, Uber Technologies Inc.’s quarterly net loss narrowed by 20% as a booming food-delivery business helped to partially offset further weakness in ride sharing.

PepsiCo Inc. said quarterly revenue rose 8.8% from a year ago as the COVID-19 pandemic led to increased demand for snacks and beverages. The company expects earnings and revenue growth to “be consistent” with its long-term objectives.

MGM Resorts International saw a 53% year-over-year decline in quarterly revenue as its casino business in Las Vegas and Macau continued to reel in the wake of COVID-19. The company expects demand in Las Vegas to return later this year and said its sports betting unit, BetMGM, will be in 20 markets by yearend.

Walt Disney Co. will release its quarterly results after markets close.

In deals, Kraft Heinz Co. agreed to sell its nuts business to Hormel Foods Corp. for $3.35 billion in cash. The deal includes the Planters nut brand, Nut-rition, Planters Cheez Balls and Corn Nuts brands.

Shares of cannabis companies were sharply higher Thursday morning amid continued speculation that major reform could take place with Democrats controlling the White House and both chambers of Congress.

In commodities, West Texas Intermediate crude oil fell 38 cents to $58.30 per barrel and gold was unchanged at $1,842.70 an ounce.


Overseas markets were higher across the board with Germany’s DAX 30 leading the advance in Europe, up 0.59%, while France’s CAC 40 and Britain’s FTSE 100 were both up 0.1%.

In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 edged up 0.19% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 0.45% in a half day of trading ahead of the Chinese New Year break. China’s Shanghai Composite was closed.

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