Today’s Market Wrap Up and a Glimpse Into Thursday

Stocks finished the day mixed as comments out of Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell resonated with investors. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 finishing with gains while the Nasdaq extended its recent declines. Powell told lawmakers he expects inflation will calm down while monetary policy should remain intact.

Bank of America flexed its muscle with a more than doubling of profits in the second quarter. Investors, however, focused on falling revenue and punished the stock, sending shares lower by 2.5%.

Stock index futures are treading lightly on Wednesday evening as investors brace for another round of jobs data coupled with the continuation of the Q2 earnings parade.

Stocks to Watch

Netflix is trading 2% higher in the after-hours market. The company has snagged a seasoned video game executive for its gaming venture. Netflix hired Facebook’s VP of augmented reality, Mike Verdu, as it looks to take share in the gaming space. Verdu also held stints at Electronic Arts and Zynga.

Meme stocks were under pressure today, with shares of AMC Entertainment tumbling 15% in the regular session. The declines continued in extended-hours trading. The selling pressure also spilled over into GameStop, which could be feeling the heat from Netflix’s gaming push.

There could be some M&A news coming up. Cybersafety company NortonLifeLock announced it could be combining with British cybersecurity play Avast. Shares of NortonLifeLock came under pressure on the development and are down more than 2% in extended-hours trading.

Look Ahead

Investors will be looking to see if stocks return to their record levels on Thursday or continue to trade cautiously amid an uncertain inflationary outlook. On the earnings front, banks will continue to report their results including Morgan Stanley.

Economic data could also influence the direction of stocks. Industrial production for June is expected at 9:15 a.m. ET. Wells Fargo economists described manufacturing demand as “robust.” While input costs are high and supply chain constraints are an issue, the economists are predicting a 0.8% increase for June.

In addition, unemployment claims come out on Thursday. Consensus estimates call for a decline in the number of claims to levels not seen since before the pandemic reared its head.

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