Twitter Hack, Johnson & Johnson, American Airlines, Netflix - 5 Things You Must Know Thursday

Stock futures fall as data reveal a mixed picture for a recovery in China; Bank of America, J&J and Netflix report earnings; the Twitter accounts of Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos and Barack Obama are hacked.
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Here are five things you must know for Thursday, July 16:

1. -- Stock Futures Slide on Mixed Picture for China Recovery

Stock futures declined Thursday as data from China revealed the world's second-largest economy returned to growth in the second quarter but signs of weakness remained, particularly in retail sales.

Stocks also were led lower by heightened tensions between Washington and Beijing. The Trump administration is considering a sweeping ban on travel to the United States by members of the Chinese Communist Party and their families, The New York Times reported, citing people familiar with the proposal. The move likely would result in retaliation from China.

The Shanghai Composite fell 4.5% Thursday - the worst drop since the coronavirus pandemic began - after gross domestic product rose 3.2% in the second quarter, following a steep slump in the first quarter, as lockdown measures were eased. Retail sales fell 1.8% in June, however, the fifth straight month of decline.

Contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 171 points, futures for the S&P 500 were down 21 points and Nasdaq futures slumped 144 points.

Stocks on Wall Street finished higher Wednesday on news that a coronavirus vaccine candidate from Moderna  (MRNA) - Get Report produced the desired immune response and stronger-than-expected earnings from Goldman Sachs Group GS.

The Dow finished up 227 points, or 0.85%, to 26,870, the S&P 500 rose 0.91% and the Nasdaq gained 0.59%.

2. -- Bank of America, Johnson & Johnson and Netflix Report Earnings 

Johnson & Johnson  (JNJ) - Get Report reported second-quarter adjusted earnings of $1.67 a share, higher than analysts' estimates of $1.49.

Bank of America  (BAC) - Get Report earned 37 cents in the second quarter, topping forecasts of 28 cents.

Netflix  (NFLX) - Get Report is scheduled to report earnings after the closing bell Thursday.

Johnson & Johnson is a holding in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS member club. Want to be alerted before Jim Cramer buys or sells the stock? Learn more now.

The economic calendar Thursday includes weekly Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m. ET, the Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook Survey for July at 8:30 a.m. and Retail Sales for June at 8:30 a.m.

3. -- Twitter Accounts of Musk, Bezos and Obama Are Hacked

Twitter  (TWTR) - Get Report accounts of Tesla  (TSLA) - Get Report CEO Elon Musk, Amazon.com  (AMZN) - Get Report CEO Jeff Bezos and other high-profile individuals such as Barack Obama, Joe Biden and Warren Buffett were hacked Wednesday by a person or group seeking cryptocurrency.

The first tweet was sent from Musk's account, with the messaging claiming he was "feeling generous because of Covid-19" and promising to double all payments sent to a particular Bitcoin address. After the first tweet was deleted, two others appeared with a similar message.

Similar tweets were subsequently sent from the accounts of Bezos, Microsoft  (MSFT) - Get Report founder Bill Gates, former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg, Obama and from Apple's  (AAPL) - Get Report corporate Twitter account, among others. Suspicious tweets also appeared on the accounts of various cryptocurrency companies, suggesting that the tweets were part of a Bitcoin collection scam. 

Twitter said it "detected what we believe to be a coordinated social engineering attack by people who successfully targeted some of our employees with access to internal systems and tools."

“We’re looking into what other malicious activity they may have conducted or information they may have accessed and will share more here as we have it,” the company added.

Twitter shares fell 6.64% to $33.30 in premarket trading Thursday.

4. -- American Airlines Warns 25,000 Workers Could Lose Their Jobs

American Airlines  (AAL) - Get Report will issue notify 25,000 employees, or 29% of its U.S. workforce, that they face potential furloughs on Oct. 1 as travel demand for flights during the coronavirus pandemic has been extremely weak.

A memo Wednesday from CEO Doug Parker and President Robert Isom said American hopes to avoid some of the furloughs, which include around 10,000 flight attendants and 2,500 pilots.

"We hope to reduce the actual number of furloughs significantly through enhanced leave and early-out programs for represented workgroups, which we are announcing today," the memo said.

American Airlines shares declined 4.61% to $12.82.

United Airlines  (UAL) - Get Report said last week it would send furlough notices to about 36,000 staff - roughly 45% of its global total - in the coming weeks, cautioning them that if airline demand doesn't improve it would be forced to cut staff once terms of its $5 billion government loan agreement, which formed part of the CARES Act earlier this spring, expire on Oct. 1.

5. -- Coronavirus - The Latest

The number of confirmed global cases of the coronavirus has risen to 13,565,868, according to Johns Hopkins University, and deaths increased to 584,385.

The U.S. has 3,499,398 cases of the coronavirus, the most in the world, according to Johns Hopkins. Deaths in the U.S. have risen to 137,419, also the most in the world.

Texas posted a record 110 deaths from Covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, and almost 11,000 new virus cases, according to state health department data, Bloomberg reported.

The state’s death toll since the start of the pandemic rose to 3,432.