Daily Markets: Stocks Face Jobs Data, Powell This Week

U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell
Credit: Kevin Lamarque - Reuters /

Today’s Big Picture

Asia-Pacific equity markets finished the day mixed as Australia’s ASX All Ordinaries fell 0.13% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng and India’s SENSEX ended the day close to flat, up 0.04% and 0.09%, respectively. China’s Shanghai Composite gained 0.41%, Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.50% and technology/AI optimism boosted South Korea’s KOSPI and Taiwan’s TAIEX to return 1.21% and 1.95% by today’s close. European markets are mixed in midday trading and U.S. equity futures point to a modest decline to start the trading week. 

Once again, the week begins on a quiet note given the lack of fresh economic data and corporate earnings reports being shared today. We would suggest you enjoy the breather today because we are in for a snoot full of key economic data later this week that spans February Service PMI reports and a few looks at February job creation ahead of Friday’s February Employment Report. Several pieces of those data will overlap with Fed Chair Powell’s semiannual monetary policy testimony to a House committee on Wednesday and a Senate panel on Thursday. 

Powell is expected to double down on his message that there’s no rush to cut interest rates. That message is backed by the preponderance of January inflation data and comments in the February Manufacturing PMI reports that questioned the rate of progress toward the Fed’s 2% target. Should tomorrow’s February Service PMI reports echo the inflation comments from their manufacturing counterparts, the market will be reading Powell’s comments to see if rate cut expectations are moving into 2H 2024. We will be listening closely to Powell’s in anticipation of the Fed updating its Economic Projections come the conclusion of its March policy meeting on March 20.

Data Download

International Economy

There are no market-moving economic data points released today, but OPEC+ announced it will extend its voluntary production cuts of 2.2 million barrels per day through 2Q 2024, which should provide a boost for the Energy sector today. 

Domestic Economy

With a bare economic calendar today, the lone item for the market to focus on will be Philly Fed President Tom Harker’s appearance at 12 PM ET.

Congressional leaders released a bill text Sunday afternoon of half a dozen spending measures they hope to pass to head off a partial government shutdown just after midnight Saturday morning. Six other measures now set to expire after March 22 are expected to be far more difficult to negotiate and pass, since they contain about 70 percent of the overall funding and the most controversial policy decisions, affecting budgets for the Pentagon, health programs, education, and others.


Aside from Financials (-0.12%) and Utilities (-0.61%), sectors ended Friday higher, led by Technology which gained 1.83%, boosted by Broadcom (AVGO)Nvidia (NVDA), and Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) which combined to contribute to just over 45% of the sector’s return. Energy and Real Estate also led, gaining 1.16% and 1.10%, respectively. Broad indexes were up across the board with the Dow gaining 0.23%, the S&P 500 rising 0.80%, the Russell 2000 adding 1.05% and the Nasdaq Composite closing 1.14% higher.

In individual names, shares of Las Vegas Sands Corporation (LVS) declined 5.94% as the January Nevada regional gaming revenues report indicated that, despite state revenues hitting a record-breaking $1.28 billion, casinos on the strip saw revenues fall 3.8% YoY. Here’s how the major market indicators stack up year-to-date: 

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average: 3.71%
  • S&P 500: 7.70%
  • Nasdaq Composite: 8.42%
  • Russell 2000: 2.43%
  • Bitcoin (BTC-USD): 48.75%
  • Ether (ETH-USD): 49.57%

Stocks to Watch

Avade Pharmaceuticals (AVDLand Sea Limited (SE) are expected to release quarterly earnings before equities begin trading later this morning. Pre-market breadth is robust today as 305 names in the S&P 500 have traded hands so far this morning with 174 gainers and 131 decliners. Camden Property Trust (CPT) is poised to open just over 5% higher following the company’s positive weekend operating update while Western Digital (WD) and Micron Technology (MU) are seeing a healthy bid ahead of the open. Names coming under pressure this morning include Iron Mountain (IRM)Zions Bancorp (ZION), and Eversource Energy (ES).

At an economic forum, Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang said that artificial general intelligence could – by some definitions – arrive in as little as five years.

Shares of Li Auto (LI) are under pressure after the company shared its February delivery numbers fell 35% MoM to 20,251 vehicles.

Spain's largest lender, Banco Santander (SAN) eliminated about 320 positions in the U.S. as it steps up focus on its digital operations.

Reports suggest crafts retailer Joann (JOAN) could file for bankruptcy as soon as this week.

Arkhouse Management Co. LP announced it submitted an increased all-cash proposal to acquire Macy's (M) for $24.00 per share along with its partner, Brigade Capital Management. 

Super Micro Computer's (SMCI) shares will be added to the S&P 500 index as part of the latest quarterly rebalancing, effective March 18. The company will replace home appliance maker Whirlpool (WHR).


Readers who want to dig deeper into the upcoming IPO calendar should visit Nasdaq’s Latest & Upcoming IPOs page.

After Today’s Market Close

AeroVironment (AVAV), Paymentus (PAY), and StichFix (SFIX) are expected to report quarterly results after equities stop trading today. Those looking for more on upcoming quarterly earnings reports should head on over to Nasdaq’s Earnings Calendar

On the Horizon

Tuesday, March 5

  • Japan: Tokyo CPI - February
  • Japan: Jibun Bank Services PMI - February 
  • China: Caixin Services PMI - February
  • Eurozone: HCOB Services PMI - February
  • Eurozone: Producer Price Index - January
  • UK: S&P Global Services PMI - February
  • US: S&P Global Final Services PMI - February 
  • US: ISM Non-Manufacturing PMI - February 
  • US: Factory Orders - January 

Wednesday, March 6

  • Eurozone: Retail Sales - January
  • Canada: Bank of Canada Interest Rate Decision 
  • US: Weekly MBA Mortgage Applications 
  • US: ADP Employment Change Report - February 
  • US: JOLTs Job Openings & Quits - January 
  • US: Wholesale Inventories - January 
  • US: Fed Beige Book

Thursday, March 7

  • China: Imports/Exports - February
  • Eurozone: European Central Bank Interest Rate Decision 
  • US; Weekly Initial & Continuing Jobless Claims
  • US: Productivity & Unit Labor Costs - 4Q 2023
  • US: Consumer Credit - January

 Friday, March 8

  • Japan: Eco Watchers Survey - February
  • Eurozone: Employment Change, GDP - 4Q 2024
  • US: Employment Report - February

Thought for the Day

“Sometimes we stare so long at a door that is closing that we see too late there is one that is open.” ~ Alexander Graham Bell


The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Chris Versace

Christopher (Chris) Versace is the Chief Investment Officer and thematic strategist at Tematica Research. The proprietary thematic investing framework that he’s developed over the last decade leverages changing economic, demographic, psychographic and technology landscapes to identify pronounced, multi-year structural changes. This framework sits at the heart of Tematica’s investment themes and indices and builds on his more than 25 years analyzing industries, companies and their business models as well as financial statements. Versace is the co-author of “Cocktail Investing: Distilling Everyday Noise into Clear Investing Signals” and hosts the Thematic Signals podcast. He is also an Assistant Professor at NJCU School of Business, where he developed the NJCU New Jersey 50 Index.

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Mark Abssy

Mark Abssy is Head of Indexing at Tematica Research focused on index and Exchange Traded Product development. He has product development and management experience with Indexes, ETFs, ETNs, Mutual Funds and listed derivatives. In his 25 year career he has held product development and management positions at NYSE|ICE, ISE ETF Ventures, Morgan Stanley, Fidelity Investments and Loomis Sayles. He received a BSBA from Northeastern University with a focus in Finance and International Business.

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