U.S. stock futures were mixed in pre-market trading on Thursday as investors wait for President-elect Joe Biden to announce details of his COVID-19 relief package.
Dow futures were up 0.3%, S&P futures were trading 0.1% higher, while the Nasdaq was 0.3% lower at the time of writing.
Tesla (TSLA) shares were trading 2% lower in Thursday’s pre-market session after the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) asked it to recall 158,000 vehicles over safety concerns. An investigation by the regulator found that the rearview camera and touchscreen displays in 2012-2018 Model S and 2016-2018 Model X vehicles are defective. Tesla has until January 27 to respond to the recall request or face civil penalties.
In tech news, shares of chipmaker Intel (INTC) were 2.5% higher in pre-market trading on Thursday after ending Wednesday 7% stronger on the announcement that VMware CEO, Pat Gelsinger, will replace Bob Swan as company CEO next month. Intel’s board confirmed that the change in leadership is “unrelated” to its financial performance last year, but they felt it was time to take advantage of Gelsinger’s four decades of technology and leadership experience, as Intel embarks on a “critical period of transformation.”
IBM (IBM) helped Audi UK to enhance its customers’ online experience by redesigning the Audi UK website and tailoring the website to an individual’s key incentives for buying a car. Dealership closures and limited personal contact with customers due to the coronavirus has highlighted the need for improved online engagements. IBM helped Audi UK adapt to the changing environment, which has resulted in exponential lead generation growth and improved sales conversions, according to Anthony Roberts, Head of Digital at Audi UK.
In corporate news, Apogee Enterprises (APOG) shares ended almost 3% higher on Wednesday after increasing its quarterly dividend by 7% to $0.20 per share, with the dividend yield landing at 2.2%. This marks the eighth consecutive year of increased dividends. Apogee reported mixed third quarter results in December and expects fourth quarter revenues to be dented by continued project delays and uncertainty related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
IHS Markit (INFO) reported mixed fourth quarter results on Wednesday, sending its shares 1.5% lower. Revenues missed analysts’ expectations and fell 1% to $1.107 billion, while adjusted EPS of $0.72 came in 11% higher compared to a year earlier, beating analysts’ forecasts of $0.67 per share. Strong sales in the company’s financial services division were more than offset by weakness in transportation, resources, and consolidated markets & solutions segments, which caused revenues to decline.
In M&A news, Defense contractor, AeroVironment (AVAV), has agreed to buy Arcturus UAV for $405 million. The deal will be funded by $355 million in cash, and the balance with AeroVironment shares. The acquisition will help the company expand its customer penetration, broaden its growth capabilities, and boost its shareholders’ value.