Gamestop – Markets Day Ahead: How far from GameStop to game over?
Last night on Wall Street was probably when the short squeeze battle between a herd of solo traders and seasoned hedge funds over GameStop stopped being funny, at least for investors looking on from the sidelines.
The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq indexes lost about 2.6% each as funds scrambled to sell their positions in stock market darlings such as the FAANGs to make up for surging losses from bets made against struggling smaller companies.
It all spoiled any parties lined up to celebrate bumper results from Microsoft and Facebook; caught up in the broader slump, shares in the two mega-caps stars posted only modest gains. And Apple, despite beating expectations, saw shares retreat in after-hours trade.
Tesla, with a 670% share price surge over the past year, disappointed Wall Street meanwhile, with lacklustre Q4 profits and lack of a target for 2021 deliveries.
Anyway, the New York spillover dragged down Asian bourses on and European futures are 1% lower; a weaker session could mean the pan-European STOXX 600 index kisses goodbye to remaining 2021 gains.
The Fed meeting was, not entirely unexpectedly, a sideshow; it pledged in short to keep policy support intact until a full economic rebound was in place.
But its downbeat assessment of the economy added to fears for the recovery. Indeed, data later in the day is expected to show the U.S. economy contracted at its sharpest pace since World War Two in 2020.
Ten-year U.S. Treasury yields falling below 1% for the first time in three weeks is probaly all that one needs to know about today’s risk-off mood.
Other key developments that should provide more direction to markets on Thursday:
– Diageo underlying sales growth shows surprise rise on U.S. strength; BMW says 2020 cash flow exceeded market expectations; Spain’s Bankia booked a net profit of 50 million euros in Q4 versus a loss in the same 2019 period.
– German preliminary CPI
U.S. Q4 GDP/U.S. weekly jobless
European results: St James’s Place, STMicroelectronics, Tate & Lyle
(Reporting by Julien Ponthus)