US government bond yields hit their lowest level since 2016, the dollar slumped, gold rose to its highest level in more than five years, while equity futures on the S&P 500 look to test all-time highs amid a dovish line on monetary policy issued by the Federal Reserve on Wednesday.

The US central bank held rates static at its meeting on Wednesday, however reverberated the prospect of easing monetary policy in the world’s biggest economy, with Fed Chairman, Jerome Powell, having stated; "We are quite mindful of the risks to the outlook and are prepared to move and use our tools as needed”, adding during the press conference; "News about trade has been an important driver of sentiment in the interim", citing rising “uncertainties”.

Wall Street will now look to price in the possibility of a future rate cut, with 7 of 17 Fed officials now thinking it will be appropriate to lower the benchmark overnight rate by a half-percentage point by the end of the year, according to updated projections published on Wednesday.

The market’s initial reaction to this decision had seen the S&P 500, which had been mostly flat ahead of the announcement, up +0.23% into the close, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite added +0.38% to its value.

Ahead, in today’s economic calendar, Thursday includes; Weekly Jobless Claims, as well as Philly Fed Manufacturing and Employment data for June at 8:30am EST.

In earnings; Kroger (KR), Darden Restaurants (DRI), Canopy Growth (CGC) and Red Hat (RHT) are amongst the major companies scheduled to publish their earnings today.

Iran & Energy: Iran Downs US Military Drone Amid Rising Tensions. (The WSJ)
Iran said Thursday that it shot down a US military drone, the latest in a series of skirmishes across the Middle East that have stoked fears of a wider military conflict.

Politics: Trump Believes He Has the Authority to Replace Powell at Fed. (Bloomberg)
President Donald Trump has told confidants as recently as Wednesday that he believes he has the authority to replace Jerome Powell as chairman of the Federal Reserve Board, according to people familiar with the matter.

Today's Economical Announcements.

08:30AM - ★★☆ - Weekly Jobless Claims (Previous: 222,000)
08:30AM - ★★★ - Philly Fed Manuf. Index (Jun) (Previous: 16.6)
08:30AM - ★★☆ - Philly Fed Employment (Jun) (Previous: 18.2)

Pre-Market Movers & News Related Stocks.

Carnival (CCL): [EARNINGS] Reported adjusted quarterly profit of 66 cents per share, 5 cents a share above estimates. Revenue also beat forecast, however Carnival cut its full-year forecasts due to new restrictions on travel to Cuba as well as other factors. Rival cruise line operators Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line are under pressure in sympathy with Carnival.

Oracle (ORCL): [EARNINGS] Reported adjusted quarterly profit of $1.16 per share, beating estimates by 9 cents a share. Revenue also beat Street forecasts. Oracle’s results benefited from strength in its on-premise IT offerings, as well as cloud and license support services.

Steelcase (SCS): [EARNINGS] Reported quarterly earnings of 15 cents per share, 3 cents a share shy of estimates. Revenue also fell short of forecasts. The company said the revenue shortfall was due to order growth that was weighted toward the second half of the quarter.

Darden Restaurants (DRI): [EARNINGS] Reported adjusted quarterly earnings of $1.76 per share, 3 cents a share above estimates. Revenue fell short of forecasts, however, and a comparable-restaurant sales increase of 1.6% was shy of the 2.3% consensus estimate of analysts surveyed by Refinitiv. Darden also forecast full-year profit of $6.40 to $6.45 per share, compared with a $6.46 consensus estimate.

Aecom (ACM): [NEWS] Activist investor Starboard Value sent a letter to the infrastructure company’s board and CEO saying the stock is deeply undervalued and that significant opportunities exist to unlock value. Starboard owns a 4% stake in Aecom.

Dell Technologies (DELL): [RATING] Rated “buy” in new coverage at Deutsche Bank, which said a likely slowdown in information technology infrastructure growth is already reflected in the stock’s price, following a recent 25 percent pullback.

Boeing (BA): [NEWS] Is in talks with more airlines for sales of its currently grounded 737 Max jet, according to sales chief Ihssane Mounir. That follows a 200-jet commitment from British Airways owner IAG.

Tesla (TSLA): [REVIEW] Goldman lowered its price target on the automaker’s stock to $158 per share from $200, while maintaining a “sell” rating. Goldman said it sees a lower probability that upside volume scenarios will be achieved.

Netflix (NFLX): [NEWS] Netflix said its “Murder Mystery” movie was watched by nearly 30.9 million account holders in its first three days, the biggest opening ever for a Netflix film.

Pier 1 Imports (PIR): [REVERSE SPLIT] Pier 1 announced a 1-for-20 reverse stock split, in order for the household goods retailer to regain compliance with New York Stock Exchange listing standards.

Hershey (HSY): [DOWNGRADE] Downgraded to “underweight” from “neutral” at Piper Jaffray, which said the chocolate maker has stable growth but is trading at a historically high premium to its peers.

T-Mobile (TMUS): [NEWS] Is preparing for an auction of its Boost Mobile prepaid unit if its talks to sell wireless assets to Dish Network fall through, according to a Reuters report.

Deutsche Bank (DB): [NEWS] Is facing a possible probe over whether it complied with US anti-money laundering laws, according to a report in the New York Times.


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