U.S. stock futures appeared set to start the week higher as investors look forward to a busy week that includes earnings releases from some of the largest tech firms on Wall Street.
Dow futures were trading relatively flat, up just 0.05%, S&P futures were 0.4% stronger, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq futures were almost 1% higher at the time of writing.
Shares of Castor Maritime were most actively traded before the bell after raising $15.3 million in Debt Financing, with almost 3 million shares having already traded hands in the pre-market session.
Vyne Therapeutics was the top gainer in pre-market trading and looked set to open 68% higher than its close on Friday, followed by Express Inc (+52%) and GameStop Corp (+47%).
Meanwhile, pre-market top losers were Climate Change Corp (-14%), NMI Holdings (-11%) and Medley Management (-10%).
In COVID news, Australia’s health regulator has approved the Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for the immunization of people aged 16 and older. The country’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) said in a statement that the vaccine “has been shown to prevent COVID-19 however, it is not yet known whether it prevents transmission or asymptomatic disease.” Pfizer (PFE) and BioNTech (BNTX) can now move ahead with the delivery of the first vaccine doses.
In earnings news, Regions Financial (RF) reported better-than-expected fourth quarter results, driven by strong revenues and a decline in credit loss allowances. Fourth quarter earnings spiked 61% compared to a year ago, coming in at $0.61 per share and beating analysts’ expectations of $0.42 per share. Revenues also exceeded analysts’ forecasts of $1.55 billion and grew 11.7% year-on year to $1.6 billion. Regions Financial’s share price is up 10% so far this year.
New Oriental Education (EDU) dropped 7.5% on Friday after reporting better-than-expected second quarter results, together with third quarter guidance that failed to impress investors. Second quarter revenues and adjusted earnings per ADS (American Depository Share) saw year-on-year growth of 13% and 19% respectively, but investors seemed to be more focused on the third quarter mid-point sales forecast of $1.122 billion, which is below analysts’ expectations of $1.14 billion.
Huntington Bancshares (HBAN) fell over 4% on Friday, after reporting fourth quarter earnings that missed analysts’ estimates. Year-on-year, earnings fell 4% to $0.27 compared to analysts’ forecasts of $0.29, while revenues managed to grow 7% year-on-year to $1.24 billion, but still fell short of forecasts. The company also announced a quarterly dividend of $0.15, which translates to a 4.3% annual dividend yield.
Meanwhile, shares of DraftKings (DKNG) were 2% higher in pre-market trading following the launch of its mobile and online sportsbook in Virginia, ahead of the Super Bowl, which is scheduled to begin in the first week of February. Virginia is now the 12th U.S. state where the online sports betting and gaming company’s product is available.
Monday kicks off a busy week of earnings, with LKFN, KMB and BOH reporting before the bell, while BRO, STLD and BXS will report their earnings after the market closes.