Morning Preview: December 24, 2020

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Early Look

Thursday, December 24, 2020





DJ Industrials




S&P 500










Stocks are rallying on this abbreviated trading session on reports the UK and EU are set to announce a Brexit trade deal with just a week left for Britain’s final exit from the European Union. A last-minute hitch related to fishing has delayed the agreement, but an announcement is expected later in the day according to reports. Britain had sought 80% cut in EU fish caught in its waters over 3-years, but the final deal apparently says the EU’s catch is set to drop by 25% over 5.5 years. In the U.S., Democrats are looking to win quick passage of legislation providing $2,000 in direct payments to Americans as part of a coronavirus economic relief initiative after President Donald Trump unexpectedly insisted on the provision which called for one-time checks in the amount of $600 each. Major U.S. averages are closed at 1:00 PM ET for Christmas Eve, with no economic data on the calendar and are closed tomorrow. In Asian markets, The Nikkei Index rose 143 points to 26,668, the Shanghai Index slipped -19 points to 3,363 and the Hang Seng Index rose 43 points to 26,386. In Europe, the FTSE 100 is little changed at 6,490 while stock markets in Germany, Italy and Switzerland were closed for the Christmas holidays. Trading will resume on Monday, Dec. 27. News headlines are very quiet as expected.


Stocks finished Wednesday higher again, as the Russell 2000 extended its streak of record highs, topping the 2,000 level as attention focused on politics with the COVID relief bill still undecided in Washington and the U.K. and EU reportedly near a Brexit deal. Late yesterday, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said that President Donald Trump was undecided about whether to veto the spending and relief bill, although Trump did veto Congress’ defense bill today. McCarthy also said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s bid to push through $2,000 stimulus checks through unanimous consent will fail. The S&P 500 edged higher with energy the best-performing sector, while the Nasdaq Composite slipped.

Market Closing Prices Yesterday

·     The S&P 500 Index edged higher 2.75 points, or 0.07%, to 3,690.01

·     The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 114.32 points, or 0.38%, to 30,129.83

·     The Nasdaq Composite dropped -36.80 points, or 0.29%, to 12,771.11

·     The Russell 2000 Index advanced 17.22 points, or 0.87% to 2,007.10






WTI Crude















10-Year Note





Sector News Breakdown


·     An Apollo Global Management (APO)-led consortium agrees to acquire a 49.9% stake in Anheuser-Busch InBev’s (BUD) U.S.-based metal container plants for ~$3B.

·     Drive Shack (DS) files $500M mixed securities shelf


Energy, Industrials and Materials

·     U.S. Steel (X) said it has closed on the sale of its non-core real estate asset, the Keystone Industrial Port Complex, in Fairless Hills, Pennsylvania. Under the terms of the sale, the company received approximately $160M in cash



·     Paychex’s (PAYX) payroll and time and attendance management solutions are available through Fiserv’s (FISV) Clover App Market.

·     Macquarie Infrastructure (MIC) declares $11.00/share special dividend, returning all the net proceeds to shareholders from $2.67B sale of its International-Matex Tank Terminals business.

·     MoneyGram International (MGI) said it has not currently been notified or been made aware of any negative impact to its commercial agreement with Ripple Labs but will continue to monitor for any potential impact as developments in the US SEC’s lawsuit against Ripple evolve.

·     Square (SQ) has held talks to acquire music-streaming service Tidal as part of a push to diversify, Bloomberg reported, citing a person familiar with the situation.

·     Truist Financial (TFC) announces $2B share repurchase plan



·     Moderna (MRNA) said it expects that the immunity offered by its COVID-19 vaccine would be protective against the new variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus recently detected in the U.K. However, the company plans to run tests the confirm the activity of the vaccine vs. any strain.

·     Altimmune Inc (ALT) said the FDA had put a clinical hold on its application to begin human testing of its single-dose COVID-19 vaccine, AdCOVID. The FDA sought additional data on the vaccine candidate’s chemistry, manufacturing and controls

·     Amedisys (AMED) announces up to $100M share repurchase plan

·     Senseonics (SENS) said it sees Q4 net revenues to be ~$3.5M, up from previous forecast of $2.5M, ahead of consensus $2.5M; FY 2021 net revenue of $12M to $15M (consensus $12.74M).


Technology, Media & Telecom

·     Alibaba Group (BABA) linked companies and other platform firms, including Meituan and (JD) shares fell on reports China has launched an investigation into Alibaba Group for suspected monopolistic behavior and will summon its Ant Group to meet in coming days, regulators said

·     Alaska Communications (ALSK) received an acquisition proposal from a third party at $3.40 per share (vs. prior $3.25 per share), which the board determines to be “Superior Proposal” valued at ~$332M including net debt.

·     The SolarWinds (SWI) cyberattack last week is still “impacting enterprise networks across federal, state, and local governments, as well as critical infrastructure entities and other private sector organizations,” the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency said in an alert today


Market commentary provided by Catena Media Financials US, LLC, a firm separate from and not affiliated with Regal Securities. Regal Securities has not participated in the creation of the content, and does not explicitly or implicitly endorse the content.

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