Investors' eyes are all on the Fed today, with futures pointing to a mixed opening to trading after inflation data sent markets downward in yesterday's session.
US inflation data released on Tuesday was stronger than expected, with the wholesale inflation reading of 9.6% for the 12-months to November being the fastest ever. This sent indices lower and turned investor attention towards the ongoing US Federal Reserve meeting.
Fed chief Jerome Powell is set to make a statement in the early afternoon, where he could announce a decision to accelerate the tapering of bonds, which could mean that interest rates will be set for an increase sooner rather than later.
This could be bad news for stock market investors as higher interest rates can blunt the growth of shares, as companies have less access to capital through loans. As such, market activity might be low in the morning period as investors wait for Powell's speech.
Here are a few of the trending stocks today:
Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) has reported that its Paxlovid drug offers significant protection against the Omicron variant, even for highly vulnerable patients.
GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE: GSK) and Sanofi (EPA: SAN) have delayed the release of data concerning the effectiveness of the COVID booster shot that the duo are developing together. The data will not be released until the first quarter of next year.
Sunrun (NASDAQ: RUN) fell as California state legislators placed a new hurdle in its path. New rules have been approved for rooftop solar panels, leaving investors concerned that installation timing and consumer costs could be affected.
Other solar energy providers and installers, such as Enphase Energy (NASDAQ: ENPH) and SunPower Corporation (NASDAQ: SPWR), were also lower following the news.
Adobe (NASDAQ: ADBE), Zscaler (NASDAQ: ZS) and Cloudflare (NYSE: NET) dropped lower as JPMorgan downgraded a series of cloud software companies, noting that their valuations had been high in the light of potential increases to interest rates.
Cineworld (LON: CINE) has been ordered to pay almost $1bn in damages to Cineplex (TSE: CGX) by a Canadian court. The decision concerns Cineworld’s abandonment of a takeover bid on its Canadian rival. Cineworld has confirmed that it will appeal.
Finally, the city of Paris’s largest taxi firm has confirmed a suspension of the use of Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) Model 3 vehicles. This follows a fatal crash, in which one person was killed and at least 20 were injured, which took place in the city over the weekend.
Meanwhile, here’s a taste of the latest news from Asian markets:
Toyota (NYSE: TM) has unveiled its electric vehicle plans. The Japanese car manufacturer said it will spend around $35bn on the 15 new electric Toyota and Lexus models.
Chinese property developer Shimao (HK: 0813) was in the red as canceled apartment deals in Shanghai led to concerns that the company could be the latest big name to fall in a disastrous month for the far-eastern nation’s property giants.
Finally, here are some of the biggest crypto stories at the moment:
Dogecoin (DOGE) has leapt in value after Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the car manufacturer will accept the meme coin for payments.
A glitch on CoinMarketCap.com briefly inflated the price of Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) enormously, with the cost of the former rising to $789bn for a short time.
Binance (BNB) has announced plans to launch a new exchange in Indonesia in a partnership with one of the nation’s biggest telecoms providers.