March 2, 2020 / 2:57 PM / a month ago

US STOCKS-Wall Street set for choppy session; stimulus measures in focus

* Futures up: Dow 0.83%, S&P 0.69%, Nasdaq 0.92%

* Banks pressured by drop in treasury yields

* Forty Seven jumps on Gilead’s $4.9 bln offer (Adds comment, updates prices)

By Ambar Warrick and Sanjana Shivdas

March 2 (Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures oscillated between gains and losses on Monday, as investors continued to fret about the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak amid assurances of stimulus measures from major central banks.

Wall Street recorded its biggest weekly decline since the 2008 financial crisis on Friday, sinking into correction territory amid rampant fears of a recession resulting from the epidemic.

At 9:06 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 210 points, or 0.83%. S&P 500 e-minis were up 20.5 points, or 0.69% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 77.5 points, or 0.92%.

Futures had swung more than 1.5% in either direction earlier, while Wall Street’s fear gauge jumped as much as 9% to 43.77 points.

“Markets (are) trying to get a sense of where we are in the correction relative to the coronavirus,” said Robert Pavlik, chief investment strategist and senior portfolio manager at SlateStone Wealth LLC in New York.

“If we can hold around flat-line to up (today), that’s a huge win.”

Latest data from China showed factory activity in February contracted at its sharpest pace on record due to virus-related disruptions.

The figures, coupled with last week’s losses, prompted reassurances from the U.S. Federal Reserve and the Bank of Japan to intervene with monetary stimulus, if needed, sparking hopes of a coordinated effort by central banks to maintain stability.

Investors now expect the Fed to deliver a 50 basis points rate cut when it meets on March 17-18.

Financial markets are also awaiting final readings of the U.S. Markit and ISM manufacturing indexes to gauge the health of the domestic economy, with flash readings last month showing a decline in business activity.

Cruise operator Carnival Corp fell 6.1% in premarket trading as the travel and leisure sector continued to reel under disruptions caused by the virus outbreak.

Peers Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd dropped about 2.5% and 4.7%, respectively.

Major banks fell as increased bets on a rate cut prompted a drop in bond yields. JPMorgan Chase & Co, Citigroup and Wells Fargo & Co fell between 1% to 1.5%.

In a bright spot, China’s JD.com Inc rose 5.9% after it forecast at least a 10% rise in revenue for the first quarter, after posting better-than-expected quarterly results.

Cancer drug developer Forty Seven Inc jumped 61.9% after larger peer Gilead Sciences made a $4.9 billion offer for the firm. Gilead rose 1.1%. (Reporting by Ambar Warrick and Sanjana Shivdas in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur)

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