First Look With Surveillance: Strikes Set, Bonds Rally
It's looking like another down day for North American equity markets, with U.S. futures pointing toward further declines in the wake of yesterday’s selloff. At last check, futures south of the border are pointing to something in the neighbourhood of one per cent declines in the wake of the S&P 500’s worst showing since Dec. 15 in yesterday’s trade. Almost seems that we’re oscillating between “bad news is good news” on the economic front (i.e., keeps the U.S. Federal Reserve from more aggressive tightening) and “bad news is bad news” (i.e., slowing growth will hamper overall economic output,) with the latter playing out yesterday on the retail sales and producer price index front, sending stocks lower.
LAGARDE VOWS TO STEP UP THE FIGHT AGAINST INFLATION
European Central Bank president Christine Lagarde isn’t letting off the gas pedal when it comes to the fight to rein in inflation. Speaking in Davos, Lagarde said inflation remains “way too high” and that policymakers will stay the course in their efforts to tamp down on price pressures. While headline inflation has eased in Europe – mostly due to some moderation in energy prices as winter proved milder than originally feared – underlying inflation ex-energy has held firm, which could prompt a more aggressive rate-hiking cycle.
WATCHING FOR NETFLIX EARNINGS
We’re going to be keeping a close eye on Netflix after the closing bells when it reports fourth-quarter earnings. There are several factors at play here – let’s see if some hits like the Addams Family riff Wednesday and the Daniel Craig’s vehicle Glass Onion help the streamer exceed its forecast for 4.5 million subscriber growth, not to mention any cues on the uptake of its ad-supported streaming tier and efforts to crack down on password sharing. To flick back at that subscriber number, this is also the first quarter where we won’t get an early view of Netflix’s subscriber growth forecast, as the company shifts its attention to revenue growth as a more important metric.
OTHER NOTABLE STORIES
- Birchcliff Energy is making good on its plans to increase its dividend by a whopping 900 per cent, announcing late yesterday that the quarterly payout would rise to $0.20 per share from $0.02.
- Hootsuite is replacing chief executive officer Tom Keiser and slashing 70 jobs – about seven per cent of its workforce – as the company undertakes its third round of layoffs in the last six months.
- TD Bank says it expects its stake in Charles Schwab to translate into $285 million worth of reported equity in net income in its fiscal fourth quarter.
- Notable data: Wholesale Trade, U.S. Initial Jobless Claims, U.S. Housing Starts & Building Permits, Philadelphia Fed Index
- Notable earnings: Richelieu Hardware, Procter & Gamble, Netflix