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Top Stock Market News For Today January 27, 2022

Apple, Mastercard, and Visa are set to host their latest earnings calls in the stock market today.
The post Top Stock Market News For Today January 27, 2022 appeared first on Stock Market News, Quotes, Charts and Financial Information | StockMarket.c…



Stock Market Futures Mixed Following Federal Reserve Policy Update

Stock market futures are mixed during today’s early morning trading. This is likely as investors digest the latest statements from the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC). Now, among the key takeaways from the FOMC meeting would be its decision to hold interest rates at near-zero for now. Even so, there remains a focus on withdrawing pandemic-era policies amidst rising inflation. This is evident from the following statement from the Fed. “With inflation well above 2% and a strong labor market, the Committee expects it will soon be appropriate to raise the target range for the federal funds rate.

Now, the current move by the Federal Reserve is not all that surprising. This is because policymakers have and continue to reiterate that ending the central banks’ asset purchase program is their first priority. On this front, the FOMC affirms that it will likely complete the process by early March. By extension, we could see the first interest rate hike within the next two months. For one thing, increasing interest rates would help to address the current issue with inflation. This would primarily raise borrowing costs and reduce demand for goods in general.

For today, investors could be closely watching how these updates weigh in on earnings in Big Tech in the stock market today. As of 7:24 a.m. ET, the Dow & S&P 500 are declining by 0.26%, and 0.09%, while Nasdaq futures are trading higher by 0.15%.

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Apple Earnings On Tap After Closing Bell Today; Reportedly Making Bold Push Into Fintech

Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) is the next FAANG member reporting quarterly earnings figures today. With the consumer tech titan coming under the microscope today, investors will likely be tuning in to AAPL stock today. Accordingly, Wall Street is currently expecting Apple to report an earnings per share of $1.88 on revenue of $118.7 billion. Now, to begin with, these figures are commendable even after accounting for the company’s massive operations. However, after a solid two years of strong iPhone sales amidst the pandemic, things appear to be normalizing for Apple. According to a statement to its component suppliers, the demand for iPhone 13’s is weakening. Because of this, the focus could be on Apple’s iPhone revenue this quarter.

Aside from its earnings, Apple does not seem to be slowing down in the least bit on the operational front. According to sources from Bloomberg, the company is planning to test out new fintech services. This would see small businesses being able to accept digital payments directly from iPhones. In other words, Apple could be looking to turn iPhones into payment terminals. More importantly, the report suggests that all this will be done without additional hardware through near-field communication (NFC) tech.

Should all this be the case, Apple would be stepping up to the plate against firms like Block (NYSE: SQ). Regardless of how you look at it, Apple seems to be having an exciting week. With that in mind, investors may want to consider taking a closer look at AAPL stock now.

AAPL premarket
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

Tesla Posts Strong Earnings And Reveals Plans To Rev Up Autonomous Vehicle Tech And Production Efforts

Elsewhere, Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) reported positive numbers in its fourth-quarter earnings yesterday. After the closing bell, the company reported earnings of $2.52 on record quarterly revenue of $17.72 billion. Notably, this would be well above estimates of $2.36 and $16.57 billion respectively. In detail, the electric vehicle (EV) goliath saw its total revenue soar by 65% year-over-year. Over the same period, its automotive revenue is currently looking at sizable gains of 71%. Also, Tesla’s net income is up by a whopping 760%, totaling $2.32 billion.

Despite all of this, TSLA stock ended the post-market trading hours in the red. For the most part, this would be due to CEO Elon Musk’s latest update on Tesla’s operation. According to Musk, the EV firm will likely remain “chip-limited” this year and lack any new models in 2022. Furthermore, he also notes that Tesla’s factories have been and still are running below capacity. The reason for this is supply chain issues becoming a “main limiting factor,” in Musk’s words.

While all this may appear to be negative, the company has also been holding its ground. Throughout 2021, Tesla hit record production figures and is looking to expand beyond its 600,000 units per year manufacturing capacity. After considering all of this data, investors looking for long-term buys could be eyeing TSLA stock.

TSLA stock chart
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

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Intel Reports Solid Earnings Beats And Provides Optimistic Guidance

Similar to Tesla, Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) also posted better-than-expected figures in its latest earnings report. Diving in, the semiconductor maker raked in a total revenue of $19.5 billion for the quarter. This would exceed consensus forecasts of $18.31 billion. Moreover, Intel recorded an earnings per share of $1.09, beating expectations of $0.91. If that wasn’t enough, the company’s Client Computing Group, its largest division, raked in a revenue of $10.1 billion. To put things into perspective, this is against estimates of $9.6 billion and marks a 7% year-over-year dip.

Commenting on the company’s overall performance is CEO Pat Gelsinger. He says, “Q4 represented a great finish to a great year. We exceeded top-line quarterly guidance by over $1 billion and delivered the best quarterly and full-year revenue in the company’s history.” Adding to that, Gelsinger highlights, “Our disciplined focus on execution across technology development, manufacturing, and our traditional and emerging businesses is reflected in our results. We remain committed to driving long-term, sustainable growth as we relentlessly execute our IDM 2.0 strategy.

Additionally, Gelsinger also talked about the company’s next-generation server chip, Sapphire Rapids. According to the CEO, Sapphire Rapids is set to begin shipping this quarter with plans for production boosts in Q2. All in all, it seems like Intel is kicking into high gear across the board. Because of that, INTC stock could be in focus in the stock market now.

INTC Stock chart
Source: TD Ameritrade TOS

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Notable Earnings To Know In The Stock Market Today

Not to mention, there are plenty of massive companies reporting their earnings today as well. This ranges from some of the biggest names in consumer tech to industrial giants, and consumer staples. In the pre-market hours, we have Mastercard (NYSE: MA), Nucor (NYSE: NUE), McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD), and Altria (NYSE: MO) on tap. Also, two key airline operators, JetBlue (NASDAQ: JBLU) and Southwest (NYSE: LUV) fall in this group as well.

Alternatively, for those looking towards earnings after the closing bell, there is a strong focus on tech. Aside from Apple, Robinhood (NASDAQ: HOOD), Visa (NYSE: V), Western Digital (NASDAQ: WDC), and Atlassian (NASDAQ: TEAM) are reporting earnings. Between major tech earnings and FOMC policy updates, investors have plenty to consider in the stock market now.

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The post Top Stock Market News For Today January 27, 2022 appeared first on Stock Market News, Quotes, Charts and Financial Information |

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Beloved mall retailer files Chapter 7 bankruptcy, will liquidate

The struggling chain has given up the fight and will close hundreds of stores around the world.



It has been a brutal period for several popular retailers. The fallout from the covid pandemic and a challenging economic environment have pushed numerous chains into bankruptcy with Tuesday Morning, Christmas Tree Shops, and Bed Bath & Beyond all moving from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation.

In all three of those cases, the companies faced clear financial pressures that led to inventory problems and vendors demanding faster, or even upfront payment. That creates a sort of inevitability.

Related: Beloved retailer finds life after bankruptcy, new famous owner

When a retailer faces financial pressure it sets off a cycle where vendors become wary of selling them items. That leads to barren shelves and no ability for the chain to sell its way out of its financial problems. 

Once that happens bankruptcy generally becomes the only option. Sometimes that means a Chapter 11 filing which gives the company a chance to negotiate with its creditors. In some cases, deals can be worked out where vendors extend longer terms or even forgive some debts, and banks offer an extension of loan terms.

In other cases, new funding can be secured which assuages vendor concerns or the company might be taken over by its vendors. Sometimes, as was the case with David's Bridal, a new owner steps in, adds new money, and makes deals with creditors in order to give the company a new lease on life.

It's rare that a retailer moves directly into Chapter 7 bankruptcy and decides to liquidate without trying to find a new source of funding.

Mall traffic has varied depending upon the type of mall.

Image source: Getty Images

The Body Shop has bad news for customers  

The Body Shop has been in a very public fight for survival. Fears began when the company closed half of its locations in the United Kingdom. That was followed by a bankruptcy-style filing in Canada and an abrupt closure of its U.S. stores on March 4.

"The Canadian subsidiary of the global beauty and cosmetics brand announced it has started restructuring proceedings by filing a Notice of Intention (NOI) to Make a Proposal pursuant to the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (Canada). In the same release, the company said that, as of March 1, 2024, The Body Shop US Limited has ceased operations," Chain Store Age reported.

A message on the company's U.S. website shared a simple message that does not appear to be the entire story.

"We're currently undergoing planned maintenance, but don't worry we're due to be back online soon."

That same message is still on the company's website, but a new filing makes it clear that the site is not down for maintenance, it's down for good.

The Body Shop files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy

While the future appeared bleak for The Body Shop, fans of the brand held out hope that a savior would step in. That's not going to be the case. 

The Body Shop filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in the United States.

"The US arm of the ethical cosmetics group has ceased trading at its 50 outlets. On Saturday (March 9), it filed for Chapter 7 insolvency, under which assets are sold off to clear debts, putting about 400 jobs at risk including those in a distribution center that still holds millions of dollars worth of stock," The Guardian reported.

After its closure in the United States, the survival of the brand remains very much in doubt. About half of the chain's stores in the United Kingdom remain open along with its Australian stores. 

The future of those stores remains very much in doubt and the chain has shared that it needs new funding in order for them to continue operating.

The Body Shop did not respond to a request for comment from TheStreet.   

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Are Voters Recoiling Against Disorder?

Are Voters Recoiling Against Disorder?

Authored by Michael Barone via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

The headlines coming out of the Super…



Are Voters Recoiling Against Disorder?

Authored by Michael Barone via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

The headlines coming out of the Super Tuesday primaries have got it right. Barring cataclysmic changes, Donald Trump and Joe Biden will be the Republican and Democratic nominees for president in 2024.

(Left) President Joe Biden delivers remarks on canceling student debt at Culver City Julian Dixon Library in Culver City, Calif., on Feb. 21, 2024. (Right) Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. President Donald Trump stands on stage during a campaign event at Big League Dreams Las Vegas in Las Vegas, Nev., on Jan. 27, 2024. (Mario Tama/Getty Images; David Becker/Getty Images)

With Nikki Haley’s withdrawal, there will be no more significantly contested primaries or caucuses—the earliest both parties’ races have been over since something like the current primary-dominated system was put in place in 1972.

The primary results have spotlighted some of both nominees’ weaknesses.

Donald Trump lost high-income, high-educated constituencies, including the entire metro area—aka the Swamp. Many but by no means all Haley votes there were cast by Biden Democrats. Mr. Trump can’t afford to lose too many of the others in target states like Pennsylvania and Michigan.

Majorities and large minorities of voters in overwhelmingly Latino counties in Texas’s Rio Grande Valley and some in Houston voted against Joe Biden, and even more against Senate nominee Rep. Colin Allred (D-Texas).

Returns from Hispanic precincts in New Hampshire and Massachusetts show the same thing. Mr. Biden can’t afford to lose too many Latino votes in target states like Arizona and Georgia.

When Mr. Trump rode down that escalator in 2015, commentators assumed he’d repel Latinos. Instead, Latino voters nationally, and especially the closest eyewitnesses of Biden’s open-border policy, have been trending heavily Republican.

High-income liberal Democrats may sport lawn signs proclaiming, “In this house, we believe ... no human is illegal.” The logical consequence of that belief is an open border. But modest-income folks in border counties know that flows of illegal immigrants result in disorder, disease, and crime.

There is plenty of impatience with increased disorder in election returns below the presidential level. Consider Los Angeles County, America’s largest county, with nearly 10 million people, more people than 40 of the 50 states. It voted 71 percent for Mr. Biden in 2020.

Current returns show county District Attorney George Gascon winning only 21 percent of the vote in the nonpartisan primary. He’ll apparently face Republican Nathan Hochman, a critic of his liberal policies, in November.

Gascon, elected after the May 2020 death of counterfeit-passing suspect George Floyd in Minneapolis, is one of many county prosecutors supported by billionaire George Soros. His policies include not charging juveniles as adults, not seeking higher penalties for gang membership or use of firearms, and bringing fewer misdemeanor cases.

The predictable result has been increased car thefts, burglaries, and personal robberies. Some 120 assistant district attorneys have left the office, and there’s a backlog of 10,000 unprosecuted cases.

More than a dozen other Soros-backed and similarly liberal prosecutors have faced strong opposition or have left office.

St. Louis prosecutor Kim Gardner resigned last May amid lawsuits seeking her removal, Milwaukee’s John Chisholm retired in January, and Baltimore’s Marilyn Mosby was defeated in July 2022 and convicted of perjury in September 2023. Last November, Loudoun County, Virginia, voters (62 percent Biden) ousted liberal Buta Biberaj, who declined to prosecute a transgender student for assault, and in June 2022 voters in San Francisco (85 percent Biden) recalled famed radical Chesa Boudin.

Similarly, this Tuesday, voters in San Francisco passed ballot measures strengthening police powers and requiring treatment of drug-addicted welfare recipients.

In retrospect, it appears the Floyd video, appearing after three months of COVID-19 confinement, sparked a frenzied, even crazed reaction, especially among the highly educated and articulate. One fatal incident was seen as proof that America’s “systemic racism” was worse than ever and that police forces should be defunded and perhaps abolished.

2020 was “the year America went crazy,” I wrote in January 2021, a year in which police funding was actually cut by Democrats in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, and Denver. A year in which young New York Times (NYT) staffers claimed they were endangered by the publication of Sen. Tom Cotton’s (R-Ark.) opinion article advocating calling in military forces if necessary to stop rioting, as had been done in Detroit in 1967 and Los Angeles in 1992. A craven NYT publisher even fired the editorial page editor for running the article.

Evidence of visible and tangible discontent with increasing violence and its consequences—barren and locked shelves in Manhattan chain drugstores, skyrocketing carjackings in Washington, D.C.—is as unmistakable in polls and election results as it is in daily life in large metropolitan areas. Maybe 2024 will turn out to be the year even liberal America stopped acting crazy.

Chaos and disorder work against incumbents, as they did in 1968 when Democrats saw their party’s popular vote fall from 61 percent to 43 percent.

Views expressed in this article are opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times or ZeroHedge.

Tyler Durden Sat, 03/09/2024 - 23:20

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Veterans Affairs Kept COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate In Place Without Evidence

Veterans Affairs Kept COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate In Place Without Evidence

Authored by Zachary Stieber via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),




Veterans Affairs Kept COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate In Place Without Evidence

Authored by Zachary Stieber via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) reviewed no data when deciding in 2023 to keep its COVID-19 vaccine mandate in place.

Doses of a COVID-19 vaccine in Washington in a file image. (Jacquelyn Martin/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)

VA Secretary Denis McDonough said on May 1, 2023, that the end of many other federal mandates “will not impact current policies at the Department of Veterans Affairs.”

He said the mandate was remaining for VA health care personnel “to ensure the safety of veterans and our colleagues.”

Mr. McDonough did not cite any studies or other data. A VA spokesperson declined to provide any data that was reviewed when deciding not to rescind the mandate. The Epoch Times submitted a Freedom of Information Act for “all documents outlining which data was relied upon when establishing the mandate when deciding to keep the mandate in place.”

The agency searched for such data and did not find any.

The VA does not even attempt to justify its policies with science, because it can’t,” Leslie Manookian, president and founder of the Health Freedom Defense Fund, told The Epoch Times.

“The VA just trusts that the process and cost of challenging its unfounded policies is so onerous, most people are dissuaded from even trying,” she added.

The VA’s mandate remains in place to this day.

The VA’s website claims that vaccines “help protect you from getting severe illness” and “offer good protection against most COVID-19 variants,” pointing in part to observational data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that estimate the vaccines provide poor protection against symptomatic infection and transient shielding against hospitalization.

There have also been increasing concerns among outside scientists about confirmed side effects like heart inflammation—the VA hid a safety signal it detected for the inflammation—and possible side effects such as tinnitus, which shift the benefit-risk calculus.

President Joe Biden imposed a slate of COVID-19 vaccine mandates in 2021. The VA was the first federal agency to implement a mandate.

President Biden rescinded the mandates in May 2023, citing a drop in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. His administration maintains the choice to require vaccines was the right one and saved lives.

“Our administration’s vaccination requirements helped ensure the safety of workers in critical workforces including those in the healthcare and education sectors, protecting themselves and the populations they serve, and strengthening their ability to provide services without disruptions to operations,” the White House said.

Some experts said requiring vaccination meant many younger people were forced to get a vaccine despite the risks potentially outweighing the benefits, leaving fewer doses for older adults.

By mandating the vaccines to younger people and those with natural immunity from having had COVID, older people in the U.S. and other countries did not have access to them, and many people might have died because of that,” Martin Kulldorff, a professor of medicine on leave from Harvard Medical School, told The Epoch Times previously.

The VA was one of just a handful of agencies to keep its mandate in place following the removal of many federal mandates.

“At this time, the vaccine requirement will remain in effect for VA health care personnel, including VA psychologists, pharmacists, social workers, nursing assistants, physical therapists, respiratory therapists, peer specialists, medical support assistants, engineers, housekeepers, and other clinical, administrative, and infrastructure support employees,” Mr. McDonough wrote to VA employees at the time.

This also includes VA volunteers and contractors. Effectively, this means that any Veterans Health Administration (VHA) employee, volunteer, or contractor who works in VHA facilities, visits VHA facilities, or provides direct care to those we serve will still be subject to the vaccine requirement at this time,” he said. “We continue to monitor and discuss this requirement, and we will provide more information about the vaccination requirements for VA health care employees soon. As always, we will process requests for vaccination exceptions in accordance with applicable laws, regulations, and policies.”

The version of the shots cleared in the fall of 2022, and available through the fall of 2023, did not have any clinical trial data supporting them.

A new version was approved in the fall of 2023 because there were indications that the shots not only offered temporary protection but also that the level of protection was lower than what was observed during earlier stages of the pandemic.

Ms. Manookian, whose group has challenged several of the federal mandates, said that the mandate “illustrates the dangers of the administrative state and how these federal agencies have become a law unto themselves.”

Tyler Durden Sat, 03/09/2024 - 22:10

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