BY THE NUMBERS
U.S. stock futures slipped Monday after Friday's rally on Covid reopening optimism lifted the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 to record closings. The Nasdaq also advanced, leaving the tech-heavy index 1.5% away from its February record close. (CNBC)
For the week, the Dow was up nearly 2%, the S&P 500 gained 2.7% and the Nasdaq was up 3.1%. Apple jumped more than 8% last week, while Amazon and Google-parent Alphabet gained more than 6%. They were steady in Monday's premarket as the 10-year Treasury yield held under 1.7% after a run of 14-month highs last month. (CNBC)
* Bitcoin above $60,000 again on talk of reduced supply (Reuters)
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell reaffirmed the central bank's commitment to keep easy monetary policy in place, despite what he sees as a rapidly recovering economy from the depths of the pandemic. "I think it's highly unlikely that we would raise rates anything like this year," Powell told "60 Minutes" in an interview that aired Sunday. (CNBC)
* Powell: Economy about to grow much quicker due to vaccinations, fiscal support (CNBC)
IN THE NEWS TODAY
The coronavirus variant discovered in South Africa is able to evade some of the protection of the two-shot vaccine made by Pfizer-BioNTech, according to a new Israeli study. The researchers found the prevalence of the strain among patients who received both doses of the vaccine was about eight times higher than those who were unvaccinated. (CNBC)
* Can you mix and match Covid vaccines? Here’s what we know so far (CNBC)
* Chinese vaccines ‘don’t have very high protection rates' (AP)
Regeneron plans to ask the FDA to allow its Covid antibody therapy to be used as a preventative treatment. In a phase three clinical trial, the company said the drug cocktail reduced the risk of symptomatic infections in individuals by 81%. The therapy was given to then-President Donald Trump shortly after he was diagnosed with coronavirus last year. (CNBC)
The U.K. eased its lockdown further with the reopening of non-essential shops and pub beer gardens on Monday. A number of pubs with 24-hour licenses opened as soon as they were allowed: at one minute past midnight. The U.K. aims to lift all social restrictions on June 21. (CNBC)
Almost 20 major companies worried about a global semiconductor chip shortage that has roiled the auto industry will send senior executives to a White House summit Monday. The meeting is expected to include General Motors CEO Mary Barra and Ford CEO Jim Farley, according to Reuters.
President Joe Biden is set to meet Monday with a bipartisan group of lawmakers to discuss his more than $2 trillion infrastructure plan. The GOP base remains overwhelmingly loyal to Trump, but Biden believes Republican leaders are overlooking everyday Americans eager for compromise and action. (AP)
Uber (UBER) on Monday posted record gross bookings for March, signaling a pick-up in demand for ride hailing. The tech giant's rides business was hit hard by pandemic lockdowns last year. However, Uber benefited from a boom in food delivery, which helped to limit losses in 2020. Shares of Uber rose 2% in Monday's premarket. (CNBC)
Microsoft (MSFT) has agreed buy speech-recognition firm Nuance Communications (NUAN) for $16 billion. Shares of Nuance soared nearly 21% in Monday's premarket. At $16 billion, Nuance would be Microsoft's second largest acquisition, after its $27 billion purchase of LinkedIn in 2016. Shares of Microsoft were little changed. (CNBC)
Alibaba (BABA) shares rose over 6% in Hong Kong and in Wall Street's premarket trading Monday after the company was fined $2.8 billion by Chinese regulators as a result of an anti-monopoly probe. The investigation focused on a practice that forces merchants to list their products on one of two e-commerce platforms. (CNBC)
"Godzilla vs. Kong," which opened March 31, topped $60 million at the domestic box office, making it the highest-grossing movie to be released during the pandemic. Previously, "Tenet," another AT&T's (T) Warner Bros. film held the record with $58.5 million, which it secured during its theatrical run in 2020. (CNBC)
General Motors' (GM) majority-owned autonomous vehicle subsidiary Cruise is expanding operations internationally to Dubai. San Francisco-based Cruise has signed an agreement with the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority to be the exclusive provider for self-driving taxis and ride-hailing services through 2029, officials announced early Monday. (CNBC)
More than a hundred top executives and corporate leaders gathered online this weekend to discuss their response to restrictive voting laws under consideration in several states and already enacted in Georgia. The meeting included executives from major airlines, retailers and manufacturers, and at least one NFL owner, according to The Washington Post.
Crowds of mourners and protesters gathered in a Minneapolis suburb where the family of a 20-year-old man said he died after being shot by police. The city was already on edge and midway through the trial of the first of four police officers in George Floyd's death. (AP)
* Prosecution case nears end in ex-police officer's trial in Floyd death (AP)
STOCKS TO WATCH
Canaccord Genuity upgraded Tesla (TSLA) stock to "buy" from "hold." The firm said in a note that it expects supply constraints around Tesla's battery business to ease in 2022. The stock rose 1.3% in the premarket.
United Airlines (UAL) said in a filing that it expects first-quarter revenue to come in at $3.2 billion, down 66% from the first quarter of 2019. Shares of United slipped about 0.9% in premarket trade.
Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) shares have risen for seven straight sessions entering Monday and were up in Monday's premarket. Raymond James upgraded the stock to "outperform" from "market perform," citing improvements in the broader restaurant industry in recent weeks.
Match Group, the dating app company, received an upgrade to "buy" from "neutral" at BTIG, which said in a note that it was bullish on Match's smaller brands like Hinger and Pairs. Shares of Match rose 1.4% in premarket trading.
BTIG initiated coverage of online dating platform Bumble (BMBL) with a "buy" rating. Shares rose roughly 1.5% in Monday's premarket.
After being six shots clear with seven holes to play, Hideki Matsuyama survived a nervy finish and a late charge from Xander Schauffele to win The Masters. Matsuyama became the first Japanese player to win a men's major golf tournament. "I was thinking about my family all the way round today and I'm really happy that I played well for them," Matsuyama said. (Sky Sports)