Biden, Trump, Capitol Chaos, Twitter, Plug Power - 5 Things You Must Know Thursday

Stock futures rise Thursday after Democrats win control of the Senate and Joe Biden is recognized by Congress as the next U.S. president; Twitter and Facebook lock the accounts of President Trump; Plug Power gets $1.5 billion investment.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

Here are five things you must know for Thursday, Jan. 7:

1. -- Stock Futures Rise as Democrats Win Senate

Stock futures rose Thursday after Democrats won control of the Senate and Joe Biden was recognized by Congress as the next U.S. president.

Contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 126 points, S&P 500 futures rose 22 points and Nasdaq futures were up 106 points.

Stock futures maintained gains after jobless claims in the week ended Jan. 2, fell 3,000 to 787,000.

Stocks closed higher Wednesday and the Dow finished at a record high even as the U.S. Capitol was locked down after supporters of President Donald Trump stormed past barricades and breached the building. 

The certification of Biden's victory in the November presidential election was delayed for several hours until early Thursday after the pro-Trump supporters entered the Capitol building, the building was put lockdown and the electoral college vote count was paused as lawmakers fled for their safety.

Equities were getting a boost Thursday from expectations that Democratic control of both houses of Congress would lead to further fiscal stimulus to revive a U.S. economy battered by a coronavirus pandemic that has claimed more than 361,000 American lives.

Democrats gained control of the Senate following two key victories in runoff senatorial elections in Georgia.

“What will matter most this year is the vaccination rollout and the ability to achieve herd immunity and more government spending. On the first point, President-elect Joe Biden is likely to aggressively accelerate the rollout from Jan. 20, which is positive for risk,” said Stephen Innes of Axi.

2. -- Twitter and Facebook Lock Trump Accounts

Twitter  (TWTR) - Get Report shares traded lower in premarket trading after the platform locked the account of President Trump and threatened to permanently ban him following a series of tweets that some have alleged incited the violent storming of the Capitol building by his supporters.

In a statement published Wednesday by one of Twitter's official accounts, the micro-blogging website said Trump's account, easily the most active of any world leader and one of the most viewed on the site with nearly 89 million followers, would be "locked" for at least 12 hours for what it called "repeated and severe violations of our Civic Integrity policy."

Trump tweeted several messages following a rally in downtown Washington during which he repeated several false claims about the integrity of the presidential election and urged his supporters to "keep fighting" and march down Pennsylvania Avenue to confront lawmakers as they verified the Electoral College vote.

Twitter said it required that Trump delete several tweets and a company spokesperson confirmed to Bloomberg that Trump deleted three tweets, meaning he’ll regain his posting privileges after the suspension. 

Facebook  (FB) - Get Report also locked Trump's account.

“We've assessed two policy violations against President Trump's Page which will result in a 24-hour feature block, meaning he will lose the ability to post on the platform during that time,” Facebook said.

Twitter fell 2.27% to $52.05 in premarket trading. Facebook was rising 1.24% to $266.57.

3. -- Thursday's Economic Calendar: Jobless Claims, Micron Earnings

The U.S. economic calendar Thursday includes weekly Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m. ET, International Trade in Goods and Services for November at 8:30 a.m. and the ISM Services Index for December at 10 a.m.

Bed Bath & Beyond  (BBBY) - Get Report reported third-quarter adjusted earnings of 8 cents a share, below analysts' forecasts of 19 cents. Same-store sales in the quarter sales rose 2%, below estimates.

Walgreens Boots Alliance  (WBA) - Get Report reported fiscal first-quarter earnings of $1.22 a share vs. Wall Street expectations of $1.03.

Earnings reports are also expected Thursday from Micron Technology  (MU) - Get Report, Conagra Brands  (CAG) - Get Report, Constellation Brands  (STZ) - Get Report, Acuity Brands  (AYI) - Get Report and Lamb Weston  (LW) - Get Report.

How to Trade Micron With Earnings on Deck

4. -- Plug Power Gets $1.5 Billion Investment From South Korea's SK Group

Plug Power  (PLUG) - Get Report shares soared in premarket trading Thursday after the maker of fuel cells received an investment of $1.5 billion from South Korean conglomerate SK Group.

In a statement, the companies said they intend to form a strategic partnership to accelerate hydrogen as an alternative energy source in Asian markets. 

"Through this partnership, Plug Power and SK Group intend to provide hydrogen fuel cell systems, hydrogen fueling stations, and electrolyzers to the Korean and broader Asian markets," the statement read.

SK Group will acquire about 51.4 million shares of Plug Power for just under $29.29 each. Plug Power shares jumped 0.94% to $42.33 in premarket trading Thursday.

5. -- Roblox to Go Public Through Direct Listing

Online gaming company Roblox raised $520 million in a new round of private funding and announced it would go public in a direct listing rather than an initial public offering.

The latest financing round, led by Altimeter Capital and Dragoneer Investment Group, valued Roblox at $29.5 billion.

The funding will allow Roblox to go public without having to raise capital in an IPO. The Securities and Exchange Commission has approved a New York Stock Exchange proposal to allow companies to raise capital in a hybrid type of direct listing but no company has tested that model yet, Bloomberg noted.