Thursday February 3rd


Nasdaq futures drop as Facebook leads tech shares lower

U.S. stock index futures fell early Thursday, as traders pored through the latest batch of corporate earnings, which included disappointing numbers from tech giant Meta Platforms. Futures tied to the Nasdaq 100 dropped about 2%, and S&P 500 futures slid 1%. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures fell 68 points, or 0.19%. Shares of Facebook-parent Meta Platforms plunged more than 22% in premarket trading after the company’s quarterly profit fell short of expectations. The company also issued weaker-than-expected revenue guidance for the current quarter. “There was a lot to not like” from Meta’s report, Metropolitan Capital Advisors CEO Karen Finerman told CNBC’s “Fast Money.” She noted that the company’s revenue growth expectations were the “spookiest” part of the release. However, Finerman added that the move down seems a “little overdone.” Other social media names, including Snap and Twitter, followed Facebook shares lower. Snap shares slid 15% premarket, and Twitter dropped about 6%. Spotify Technology, meanwhile, fell 9.6% premarket after the company’s latest quarterly figures showed a slowdown in premium subscriber growth. Google-parent Alphabet, which gained 7.5% on Wednesday following blockbuster earnings, fell 1.4% premarket Thursday. Amazon, which will report after the closing bell, fell 4% premarket. In early earnings news, Dow component Honeywell’s shares fell 3.1% after the company beat narrowly on profit but fell short on revenue and provided lower-than-expected guidance. Thursday’s moves come after the major averages notched a four-day winning streak during the regular session. The Dow rose more than 200 points on the day, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite advanced 0.9% and 0.5%, respectively. Those gains were driven by a jump in tech shares, which were led by a 7.3% rally in Alphabet. That four-day jump has helped the major averages trim some of their steep losses after a downbeat January. Last month’s declines came as traders braced for potential rate hikes from the Federal Reserve. “It’s been a crazy, volatile environment, which is what happens when you’re in this transition period of monetary policy and economic growth,” Canaccord’s Tony Dwyer told CNBC’s “Closing Bell.” On the economic data front, U.S. jobless claims came in at 238,000 for the week ending Jan. 29, the Labor Department reported Thursday. Economists polled by Dow Jones expect initial claims to have fallen to 245,000 from 260,000 the week before. Those numbers followed the release of ADP’s surprisingly downbeat private payrolls data Wednesday. Investors are still looking forward to Friday’s release of nonfarm payrolls data. Consensus estimates see a gain of 150,000 jobs, according to Dow Jones, but Wall Street forecasters say the actual tally will be far lower, with one estimating a loss of 400,000 jobs in January. In central bank news, the Bank of England announced a quarter-percentage-point interest rate increase, while the European Central Bank held the line on its benchmark rate despite inflation in the euro zone rising to a new record. Asia-Pacific markets traded mixed on Thursday amid some lingering concerns about global growth and ongoing geopolitical tensions. Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 1.06% to 27,241.31 while the Topix index was down 0.86% at 1,919.92. In South Korea, the Kospi bucked the downward trend and rose 1.67% to 2,707.82 while the Kosdaq advanced 2.15% to 891.60. Singapore’s Straits Times Index gained 1.72% in late afternoon trade. A number of major markets, including those on the Chinese mainland and in Hong Kong, remain shut for the Lunar New Year holidays. Oil prices eased on Thursday following weak U.S. payrolls data and some profit-taking, but remained underpinned by tight supply as OPEC+ producers stuck to planned moderate output increases. Brent crude fell 61 cents, or 0.7%, to $88.86 a barrel, after rising 31 cents on Wednesday. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was down 69 cents, or 0.8%, at $87.57 a barrel, having gained 6 cents the previous day. Gold prices hovered on Thursday below the previous session’s one-week high, as the U.S. dollar regained ground ahead of major central bank meetings as their economies grapple with broadening inflationary risks. Spot gold was down 0.1% at $1,805.58, as of 0539 GMT, after rising to $1,810.86 in the previous session, its highest since Jan. 27. U.S. gold futures fell 0.2% to $1,806.10.