Dow Jones futures were roughly flat late Thursday, along with S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq futures, the stock market rally got a much-needed win Thursday, helped by the CDC announcing new guidelines that vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask in most situations.
The stock market rally had a positive session, even as Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies tumbled. But while the major indexes strengthened, the overall weak conditions remains. Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT) rebounded but hit resistance. Tesla (TSLA) and Square (SQ), meanwhile, fell through their 200-day lines as highly valued growth names continued to slump.
An opening bounce faded through much of the morning, with the Nasdaq briefly turning negative in the early afternoon. But stocks shored up on news that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommending lifting most mask requirements and social distancing guidelines for fully vaccinated people.
Still, the uptrend remains under pressure.
Energy stocks fell as crude prices slumped. Many tested or undercut recent buy points or trigger automatic sell signals from failed breakouts.
Chip gear makers bounced back but aren’t in position yet.
Disney Earnings Mixed
Disney earnings topped views but revenue fell short. Disney+ subscribers climbed to 103.6 million, below some expectations. DIS stock retreated 4% in extended trade. Shares edged up 0.3% to 178.34 on Thursday. Disney stock is in a flat base with 203.12 buy point, according to MarketSmith analysis, but has been drifting lower since early March, trading below its 50-day line for the past month.
Coinbase Earnings, Bitcoin Dives
Coinbase earnings and sales soared in the first quarterly report, but just missed analyst views. Use growth was strong.
In overnight trade, Coinbase stock was flat in volatile trade. COIN stock 6.5% to 265.10 on Thursday. COIN stock came public via a direct listing on April 14, hitting 429.54 intraday but trending lower ever since.
Coinbase earnings came as Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies tumbled on negative news. Elon Musk said late Wednesday Tesla would no longer accept Bitcoin for vehicle purchases, citing environmental concerns. Also, the Justice Department and IRS reportedly are probing Binance, the world’s biggest cryptocurrency exchange, on money laundering and tax evasion concerns. Bitcoin price plunged, trading below $50,000.
Beyond the ups and downs of Bitcoin, Coinbase faces concerns about competition from other crypto trading platforms from startups to Wall Street banks.
Airbnb earnings were mixed, with a wider-than-expected loss offset by a 5% revenue gain. ABNB stock was up and down in extended trade. Airbnb stock fell 3.2% to 135.75 on Thursday, continuing a sharp sell-off to the lowest since last December, days after its IPO.
Doordash reported a larger loss than expected while revenue topped. The food delivery app raised guidance. DASH stock jumped 7% overnight. Doordash stock rose 2.2% to 115.49 on Thursday, rebounding from post-IPO lows. In January, shares tried to break out of an IPO base. But on Jan. 27, DASH stock skyrocketed to a record 256.09 before reversing lower. Shares have been trending lower for nearly three months.
Cricut earnings and revenue boomed in the first post-IPO report, both beating views. CRCT stock rose 4% in extended action after initially surging 15%. Cricut stock rose 2.7% on Thursday to 20. Shares broke out of an IPO base in late April. CRCT stock ran strongly over several sessions before round-tripping the sizeable gains by Monday.
Dow Jones Futures Today
Dow Jones futures edged higher vs. fair value. S&P 500 futures rose 0.1%. Nasdaq 100 futures fell 0.1%.
CDC Lifts Mask Mandates For Vaccinated
Fully vaccinated people don’t need to wear a mask or stay six feet apart outdoors or most indoor situations, the CDC said Thursday in new guidelines. Mask mandates still apply, even for vaccinated Americans, in health care settings, on airplanes and where businesses require them.
The CDC is issuing guidelines, not rules. Local governments and businesses can still mandate masks. But many will take their cue from the CDC. Lifting the mask mandate may help spur the economic rebound. by encouraging schools to fully reopen and people generally returning to pre-pandemic spending and work patterns. It also may spur fence-sitters to get vaccinated.
Coronavirus cases worldwide reached 161.72 million. Covid-19 deaths topped 3.35 million.
Coronavirus cases in the U.S. have hit 33.xx million, with deaths above 598,000.
Stock Market Rally
The stock market rally had a decent rebound Thursday after several days of weakness. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1.3% in Thursday’s stock market trading. The S&P 500 index climbed 1.2%. The Nasdaq composite advanced 0.7%. The Russell 2000 popped 1.8%.
The 10-year Treasury yield fell 3 basis points to 1.67%. That followed four days of gains.
Apple stock rose 1.8% and Microsoft stock climbed 1.7%. Both closed below their 50-day lines, hitting resistance there.
Tesla stock fell 3.1% to 571.69. Square stock skidded 4.6%. Tumbling Bitcoin prices may have some impact on both, especially SQ stock, but plenty of former growth leaders struggled Thursday.
Among the best ETFs, the Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) rose 2%, while the Innovator IBD Breakout Opportunities ETF (BOUT) edged up 0.75%. The iShares Expanded Tech-Software Sector ETF (IGV) just edged lower, even with MSFT stock is its No. 1 holding. The VanEck Vectors Semiconductor ETF (SMH) gained 1.1%, with chip-gear names leading.
SPDR S&P Metals & Mining ETF (XME) advanced 0.5% and Global X U.S. Infrastructure Development ETF (PAVE) popped 2.15%. U.S. Global Jets ETF (JETS) ascended 2.1%. SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF (XHB) jumped 3%.
Reflecting more-speculative story stocks, ARK Innovation ETF (ARKK) retreated 2.6% and ARK Genomics ETF (ARKG) 1.8%. Tesla stock is the No. 1 holding across ARK Invest’s ETFs. Square stock also is a top-five holding while several ARK ETFs have amassed sizeable COIN stock stakes since it came public.
Market Rally Analysis
The stock market rally was on the brink of going under, so Thursday’s up day was a relief. But it was an inside day for the major indexes, not dramatically changing the overall health of the market.
The Dow Jones, after nearing its 50-day line Wednesday, rebounded to just above its 21-day exponential moving average. The S&P 500 index bounced from just above its 50-day line but stopped short of its 21-day line. The Nasdaq composite looked set to resume losses before the afternoon bounce on CDC mask guidelines.
Leading stocks were a mixed bag, with breakouts or stocks reclaiming buy points scarce. It was nice to see Apple and chip stocks bounce, but they are generally below their 50-day lines. Highly valued growth stocks continue to break down, as TSLA stock, Square, COIN stock and ARKK show.
Bottom line: The market rally remains “under pressure” and much closer to falling into a correction than “uptrend resumes.”
What Investors Should Do Now
The stock market rally rose Thursday, but didn’t give much of a reason to add to exposure. The major indexes remain near key levels while few buying opportunities presented themselves.
Caution is still the word of the day. Tech remains weak. Keep an eye on some tech titans and chip-gear makers, but they aren’t flashing buy signals for now. Story stocks, including Tesla and Square but also many others with weaker fundamentals such as Airbnb continue to seriously lag. This is simply not an area of the market to be messing with right now.
Investors can continue to have limited exposure with winning stocks across various leading sectors, but it’s not a time to be doubling down on the market. That time will come again.
Read The Big Picture every day to stay in sync with the market direction and leading stocks and sectors.
Please follow Ed Carson on Twitter at @IBD_ECarson for stock market updates and more.
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