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Friday’s Pre-Market: Here’s What You Need to Know Before the Market Opens

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U.S. stock futures were trending higher on Friday as investors await the latest release of Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) data. The report is expected to provide additional information on the status of U.S. inflation and is also expected to weigh heavily on the Federal Reserve's next policy action.

Ahead of the open, Dow futures had risen 0.3%, while Nasdaq and S&P 500 futures were trading 0.1% higher at the time of writing.

51job Inc (JOBS), Carmax Inc (KMX), Concord Medical Services Holdings Ltd (CCM), Paychex Inc (PAYX), and Quhuo Ltd (QH), are among the companies expected to release their quarterly earnings today.

Torchlight Energy (TRCH) was the most actively traded stock at the time of writing and was looking to open around 6.5% higher. The spike comes as the prices of oil and natural gas, two commodities that underpin the company's core business, edge higher. The bullish momentum could also be attributed to Torchlight Energy emerging as a meme stock on social media in recent days.

Fuwei Films (FFHL) was the biggest gainer at the time of writing, exploding around 65%, on volume of approximately 1 million shares. The spike comes as the manufacturer and distributor of high-quality BOPER plastic films delivered impressive unaudited Q1 results. Net sales for the quarter were up 22.1% to $15.5 million. Net profit more than doubled to $4.8 million.

Condor Hospitality (CDOR) was the biggest loser in pre-market trading, tanking 10.5% at the time of writing. The slide comes just days after the company announced its board of directors is evaluating strategic alternatives aimed at enhancing shareholder value.

BlackBerry (BB) delivered solid first-quarter results that topped analysts' estimates. Revenue came in at $174 million compared to the $171.25 million expected but slid 16% year-on-year. On the other hand, net loss narrowed to $62 million, or $0.11 a share, compared to the $636 million loss reported in the same period last year.

BlackBerry Executive Chairman and CEO said, “This quarter we aligned the business around the two key market opportunities – IoT and Cyber Security. In IoT we are pleased with the strong progress of the auto business, despite global chip shortage headwinds.”

Nike (NKE) shares jumped 14% after the footwear and apparel company delivered a blowout fourth quarter. Revenue in the quarter jumped 96% to $12.3 billion, topping the Street's estimates of $11.1 billion. Earnings came in at $0.93 a share compared to a net loss of $0.51 a share reported the same period last year.

NIKE CEO John Donahoe said, “FY21 was a pivotal year for NIKE as we brought our Consumer Direct Acceleration strategy to life across the marketplace. Fueled by our momentum, we continue to invest in innovation and our digital leadership to set the foundation for NIKE’s long-term growth.”

FedEx (FDX) also reported strong fourth-quarter and annual results on the back of volume growth and disciplined revenue and portfolio management. Adjusted earnings nearly doubled to $5.01 a share, topping analysts' estimates of $4.99 a share. Revenue was up 30% to $22.56 billion, surpassing Street estimates of $21.51 billion.

Chairman and CEO of FDX Frederick W. Smith said, “We continue to play an important role in global economic recovery and the delivery of COVID-19 vaccines and relief supplies throughout the U.S., Canada and more than 35 other countries. I am optimistic about the future of FedEx as we continue to innovate for our customers and meet strong demand for our global transportation network and capabilities.

In M&A news, eBay (EBAY) has reached an agreement to offload a majority stake in its Korean Business to Emart. The company is selling an 80.01% stake in G-9, G-Market, and IAC for $3 billion. It will retain a 19.9% stake in the business valued at about $0.8 billion.

eBay CEO Jamie Iannone stated, “This deal brings together two strong e-commerce and retail companies that can unlock tremendous potential in Korea and provide more choice for customers. We believe this move further optimizes our portfolio and creates value for eBay shareholders.”

Panasonic offloaded its shares in Tesla (TSLA) in the fiscal year ended March 2021, receiving $3.61 billion in the process. The company invested about $30 million in the EV giant in 2010, purchasing 1.4 million shares at $21.15 a share.