Here are the top news, trends, and analysis investors need to get their trading day started:
1. Trump slams Covid Stimulus Bill
U.S. President Donald Trump waves as he departs from the South Lawn of the White House on December 12, 2020 in Washington, DC.
Al Drago | Getty Images
President Donald Trump railed against the US $ 900 billion Covid aid bill passed by Congress, calling it an inappropriate “shame” in a tweet on Tuesday evening. He called on lawmakers to make a number of changes to the measure, most notably the amount earmarked for direct payments to Americans.
Trump did not threaten to veto and was expected to sign the laws along with the bill to keep the government open. Both Houses of Congress passed the legislation with a majority with a veto-safe majority.
In a surprise move, House spokeswoman Nancy Pelosi said she agreed to Trump’s request for payments of $ 2,000. “The Democrats are ready to unanimously bring this to the ground this week. Let’s do it!” she tweeted.
2. Markets shake off the stimulus saga, futures rise
Traders work on the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
The market seems to be shaking off the risk that Trump could delay the passage of the much-needed coronavirus relief package. Futures linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose about 50 points, which translates into an opening gain of about 60 points. The S&P 500 futures rose 0.2% and the Nasdaq 100 futures were unchanged.
The S&P 500 just experienced a three-day streak of bad luck when some investors looked to profit after an unexpected year of solid earnings. The broad equity benchmark is up more than 14%, and there are six trading days left in 2020.
3. Pfizer reaches an agreement to provide additional doses of vaccine
A health care professional draws coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine from a vial at Dignity Health’s Glignale Memorial Hospital and Health Center in Glendale, California on December 17, 2020.
Lucy Nicholson | Reuters
Pfizer and BioNTech announced a second contract with the U.S. government on Wednesday to supply an additional 100 million doses of their jointly developed Covid-19 vaccine. The deal increases the total number of cans to be shipped to the US by the end of July next year to 200 million. The government is paying $ 1.95 billion for the additional doses.
Pfizer shares rose around 1% in premarket trading on Wednesday.
4. Trump apologizes to 15 people
U.S. President Donald Trump waves as he walks the South Lawn of the White House on his return from Camp David on November 29, 2020.
Yuri Gripas | Reuters
President Donald Trump on Tuesday apologized for 15 people, including two men convicted in the investigation by Special Envoy Robert Mueller and four former Blackwater USA guards convicted of the 2007 murders of 14 unarmed Iraqi civilians in Baghdad.
Others who received pardons were two former Republican congressmen who admitted to having committed financial crimes. Trump also commuted all or some of the criminal convictions of five other people as the president is nearing his final month in office.
5. Elon Musk says Tim Cook refused to buy Tesla
Elon Musk announced that he had reached out to Apple years ago about selling Tesla, but CEO Tim Cook declined the meeting.
“During the darkest days of the Model 3 program, I reached out to Tim Cook to discuss the possibility of Apple acquiring Tesla (for 1/10 of our current value). He refused to attend the meeting,” said Musk in a tweet on Tuesday.
His comment came after Reuters reported that Apple was pushing ahead with its automotive efforts to plan to produce a self-driving vehicle powered by lithium iron phosphate batteries in 2024.
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