Here are the most important news items that investors need to start their trading day:
1. Winning streaks in jeopardy
A stellar run for U.S. stock has hit a hurdle this week. The major averages could break nine-week winning streaks after a poor start to 2024. The Dow Jones Industrial Average has fallen 0.7% for the week, while the S&P 500 has dropped 1.7% and the Nasdaq Composite has shed 3.3%. The December jobs report due Friday morning will play a major role in how stocks fare in the coming days. Follow live market updates here.
2. Jobs jitters
The nonfarm payrolls report will help to determine whether the Federal Reserve starts to cut interest rates later this year, after an aggressive hiking cycle designed to tame inflation. Investors looking for a positive catalyst hope the data balances the best of two worlds. To fuel expectations of Fed rate cuts, the numbers may need to show a labor market that is growing steadily, but not so fast that it could drive price increases. Economists polled by Dow Jones expect growth of 170,000 jobs.
3. Maersk extends Red Sea diversions
Danish shipping giant Maersk said it will divert vessels from the Red Sea for the “foreseeable future.” It made the decision as attacks by Houthi militants based in Yemen force various carriers to take alternate routes. Shipping companies have diverted more than $200 billion in goods from the critical trade route in recent weeks, raising concerns about inflation and supply-chain disruptions. In a statement, Maersk said “the situation is constantly evolving and remains highly volatile, and all available intelligence at hand confirms that the security risk continues to be at a significantly elevated level.”
4. College cash
College sports just got a major cash infusion. The NCAA and ESPN reached an eight-year, $920 million media rights deal, under which the Disney-owned network will broadcast 40 championships including football and women’s basketball. The $115 million annual value of the deal nearly triples that of the current 14-year agreement between the NCAA and ESPN. The deal will be a boon to women’s sports, which have seen TV ratings climb in recent years. The NCAA is exploring ways to distribute more of its revenue to women’s basketball after player complaints about unequal treatment compared to men’s players.
Peleton is getting more social. Shares of the fitness company spiked after it announced a partnership with TikTok. The deal will create a hub for Peloton content including short-form fitness videos and classes on the social media platform. As it tries to reverse falling sales, Peloton has tried to expand beyond its pricey equipment and boost subscribers to its fitness content.
– CNBC’s Jesse Pound, Jeff Cox, Jenni Reid, Jessica Golden and Gabrielle Fonrouge contributed to this report.
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