China Trade Agreement, Tesla, Boeing, Warren Buffett and Tiffany - 5 Things You Must Know Thursday

U.S. stock futures point to fresh record highs for Wall Street on Thursday, the first trading day of 2020; Tesla will deliver a second batch of China-made Model 3 sedans to customers on Jan. 7; Airbus passes Boeing as world's largest planemaker; Warren Buffett turns down a chance to buy Tiffany.
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Here are five things you must know for Thursday, Jan. 2:

1. -- Stock Futures Point to Fresh Records for Wall Street

U.S. stock futures pointed to fresh record highs for Wall Street on Thursday, the first trading day of 2020, as investors kicked off the new trading year in a buoyant mood driven by the prospect of a formal trade agreement between Washington and Beijing.

Donald Trump indicated Tuesday that "high level" officials from China would visit the White House on Jan. 15 to sign the phase one trade agreement brokered last month following nearly a year and a half of negotiations.

While details of the pact remain scant - beyond pledges to roll back tariffs on China-made goods and increase the purchase of American-made agricultural products - investors have cheered the fact that the two sides are at least inching toward a conclusion of the 18-month dispute.

Contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 168 points, futures for the S&P 500 rose 17.90 points and Nasdaq futures were up 61.75 points.

Stocks ended higher Tuesday, the final trading day of 2019, after President Trump said he would sign the interim trade pact with China in mid-January.

The Dow gained 76 points, or 0.27%, to 28,538, the S&P 500 rose 0.29%, and the Nasdaq rose 0.3%.

The Dow jumped 22.3% in 2019, its strongest one-year move since 2017. The S&P 500 gained 28.9% in 2019, its biggest one-year gain since 2013. The Nasdaq rallied 35.2% in 2019, also its best showing since 2013.

2. -- Jobless Claims and Manufacturing Data on Thursday's Calendar

The economic calendar in the U.S. Thursday includes weekly Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m. ET, and the PMI Manufacturing Index for December at 9:45 a.m. 

3. -- Tesla's Second Set of China-Made Model 3s to Be Delivered Jan. 7

Tesla (TSLA) - Get Report will deliver a second batch of China-made Model 3 sedans to customers on Jan. 7 at an event at its Shanghai plant, a representative for the electric vehicle company  told Reuters.

The customers this time aren't Tesla employees, unlike those who received the first set of China-made Model 3s on Monday. 

Deliveries from Tesla's gigafactory in China started just 357 days after construction of the $2 billion plant began. The company had said previously that it wanted to begin deliveries from the plant beginning at the end of January.

Separately, a crash of a speeding Tesla that killed two people in a Los Angeles suburb will be investigated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Agency spokesman Sean Rushton wouldn’t say whether the Tesla Model S was on Autopilot when it crashed on Dec. 29 in Gardena, the Associated Press reported. The system is designed to automatically change lanes and keep a safe distance from other vehicles.

4. -- Airbus Tops Boeing as World's Largest Planemaker

Airbus has topped rival Boeing (BA) - Get Report as the world’s largest planemaker for the first time since 2011, a result that wasn't unexpected as Boeing remains mired in the 737 MAX crisis.

Airbus delivered 863 aircraft in 2019, Reuters reported, citing airport and tracking sources said on Wednesday. Deliveries rose 7.9% from 800 aircraft in 2018.

Boeing, meanwhile, through the first 11 months of 2019 delivered just 345 aircraft, down from 704 the year before. Boeing has yet to release deliveries data for the full year.

Boeing's best-selling jet - the 737 MAX- has been grounded since mid-March following two fatal accidents.

5. -- Warren Buffett Turned Down a Chance to Buy Tiffany

Warren Buffett turned down Tiffany (TIF) - Get Report after the U.S. jeweler went looking for an alternative suitor following a takeover approach from luxury goods company LVMH .

Although Buffett had bailed out Tiffany during the financial crisis, he rejected its advances this time, the Financial Times reported, citing people briefed on the matter. Buffett confirmed the conversation took place. 

LMVH announced in late November it had reached an agreement to buy Tiffany for $16.2 billion.

Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) - Get Report hasn't made a significant acquisition in four years, and its cash pile has swollen to a record $128 billion, the Financial Times noted.