1. Dow set to open lower after Monday’s massive bounce
Dow futures, in another volatile overnight session, were pointing to losses at Tuesday’s open on Wall Street. Hopes for action from the Federal Reserve and world central banks to mitigate the economic impact of the coronavirus sparked a powerful rally on Monday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average soared nearly 1,300 points or 5% in its biggest percent-gain since March 2009, reclaiming a big chunk of last week’s largest weekly decline since the 2008 financial crisis.
The Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq closed out of correction territory Monday. A correction is defined as a decline of at least 10% from recent 52-week highs. Meanwhile, investors will be looking for signs of how the coronavirus may be affecting retailers Target and Kohl’s when they hold conference calls after issuing earnings. Target reported mixed fourth-quarter results before the bell. Kohl’s beat on the top and bottom lines and hiked its dividend by 5%. Nordstrom leads Tuesday afternoon’s retail earnings reports.
2. Mnuchin and Powell led a call of G-7 finance ministers and central bankers
Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Fed Chairman Jerome Powell on Tuesday morning led a conference call of global finance ministers and central bankers to coordinate an economic policy response to coronavirus. “We, G7 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors, are closely monitoring the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and its impact on markets and economic conditions,” according to a post-call statement. Early Tuesday, the 10-year Treasury yield, a benchmark for many consumer loans, moved higher after hitting a record low of 1.03% on Monday.
3. Trump again calls for the Fed to cut rates
Ahead of the G-7 call, President Donald Trump once again called for the Fed to cut interest rates after the Australian central bank cut its rates to record lows and noted the impact of the coronavirus. In an early Tuesday morning tweet, the president said, “Jerome Powell led Federal Reserve has called it wrong from day one.” Powell was appointed by Trump to lead the U.S. central bank.
4. Coronavirus cases outside China accelerate
The spread of coronavirus in China is slowing while new cases in many other countries are accelerating. The vast majority of the more than 91,000 global cases and over 3,100 deaths are still in China. However, new cases in South Korea surged by 851 on Tuesday, bringing total infections there to more than 5,100, including 31 deaths. Italy’s cases rose to more than 2,000 with 52 deaths. Coronavirus cases surpassed 100 in the United States with six deaths. On Capitol Hill, aides said negotiations were nearing completion on an emergency funding bill to develop a vaccine and offer disaster loans to businesses hurt by the crisis.
5. Super Tuesday could be make-or-break for the remaining Democratic candidates