Friday April 12th


Dow futures jump 200 points after strong JP Morgan earnings and a big deal in the energy industry

U.S. stock index futures rose on Friday as the corporate earnings season kicked off with stronger-than-expected results from banking giant J.P. Morgan Chase. At around 8:10 a.m. ET, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures rose 236 points, indicating a gain of 230 points at the open. Futures on the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 also traded sharply higher. J.P. Morgan Chase jumped more than 2.5% in the premarket as Wall Street cheered the company’s quarterly numbers. The bank’s better-than-forecast profit was driven by the “impact of higher rates. ” Wells Fargo is also scheduled to release its first-quarter earnings later on Friday. Wells Fargo also reported better-than-expected results, but the stock struggled to maintain gains. Investors came into the season expecting it to be a tough one for companies. FactSet expected first-quarter earnings to have fallen 4.2% in the first quarter. Sentiment was also boosted on Friday by a massive deal in the energy sector. Dow member Chevron announced plans to acquire Anadarko Petroleum for $33 billion in cash and stock. The deal values Anadarko at a 37% premiumfrom the stock’s close on Thursday. Anadarko shares jumped 30% in the premarket while Chevron fell 4.3%. Disney shares added to the gains, rising more than 6% after the media giant unveiled a streaming service at a lower price point than Netflix. Shares of Netflix, meanwhile, dipped 2%. Meanwhile, U.S. Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Richard Clarida told CNBC on Thursday that officials at the central bank see no reason to move interest rates in either direction at present. Clarida’s comments came a day after the FOMC released minutes from its March meeting, at which the Fed adjusted its forecast to no rate moves this year. The minutes reflected a central bank that will watch data closely this year, with some members leaving open the chance of a rate hike if conditions continue to improve. Shares in Asia were mixed on Friday, with the Chinese markets slipping even as official trade data came in soaring past expectations. Mainland Chinese shares were lower on the day, with the Shanghai composite dipping just below the flatline to 3,188.63 and the Shenzhen component declining 0.26 percent to 10,132.34. The Shenzhen composite fell 0.106 percent to 1,738.52. Meanwhile, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index slipped 0.22 percent. Those moves came following the release of official Chinese trade figures for the month of March, with exports and the overall trade surplus coming in much higher than expected. Other Asian markets that closed before the data release saw gains on the day, with the Nikkei 225 in Japan rose 0.73 percent to 21,870.56. The Topix index dipped slightly to 1,605.40. In South Korea, the Kospi rose 0.41 percent to close at 2,233.45. Oil prices rose on Friday as involuntary supply cuts from Venezuela, Libya and Iran supported perceptions of a tightening market, already underpinned by a production reduction deal from OPEC and its allies. Brent crude oil futures were at $71.39 per barrel at 0832 GMT, up 56 cents from their last close and heading for a weekly gain of 1.5 percent, their third weekly gain in a row. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were at $64.19 per barrel, up 61 cents from their previous settlement, set for a weekly rise of 1.7 percent, their sixth straight week of gains. Gold prices inched up on Friday, a day after the metal posted its biggest daily percentage decline in two weeks, as the dollar and Asian equities slipped. Spot gold was up 0.1 percent at to $1,293.30 per ounce as of 0804 GMT, after touching a one-week low on Thursday. U.S. gold futures gained 0.2 percent to $1,295.40 an ounce.