Futures Mixed Ahead Of Jobless Claims

Dow Jones futures took a dip Thursday morning ahead of the Labor Department’s initial unemployment claims. Meanwhile, famed investor Cathie Wood’s Ark Invest firm shook up its bitcoin-related positions Wednesday.


Ahead of the opening bell, Dow Jones futures fell 0.1% vs. fair value. S&P 500 futures were flat, while tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 futures gained 0.2% in morning action.

Among U.S. exchange traded funds, the Nasdaq 100 tracker Invesco QQQ Trust (QQQ) moved up 0.2%, while the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) was flat early Thursday.

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Oil prices extended Wednesday’s losses, as West Texas Intermediate futures dropped more than 1% Thursday morning. WTI fell below $74 a barrel. On Tuesday, WTI closed at its highest level since late November.

Cathie Wood, Jobless Claims

On Wednesday, Cathie Wood’s ARK Next Generation Internet (ARKW) exchange traded fund purchased more than 4.3 million shares of Proshares Bitcoin Strategy ETF (BITO), according to daily trade disclosures. The bitcoin ETF position is worth about $92 million using Wednesday’s closing price. As a 5% position, it’s the sixth-highest holding in the portfolio.

The purchase came as the ARKW ETF sold the entirety of its 2.2 million shares of Grayscale Bitcoin Trust ETF (GBTC), which was worth about $80 million. And the ETF also sold 148,885 shares of Coinbase Global (COIN). COIN stock finished Wednesday about 62% above a 114.43 cup-base buy point. Shares fell more than 2% early Thursday.

The price of bitcoin was slightly lower over the last 24 hours to around $43,000, according to Coindesk.

Early Thursday, first-time jobless claims are expected to rise to 210,000 vs. 205,000 in the previous week, per Econoday estimates. Claims are scheduled for 8:30 a.m. ET.

Finally, pending home sales from the National Association of Realtors are expected to rise 0.8% in November. Pending home sales dropped 1.5% in October. The report is due at 10 a.m.

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Dow Jones Nears New High

The Nasdaq composite, Nasdaq 100 and S&P 500 each climbed between 0.1% and 0.2% on Wednesday. And the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.3%, boosted by nine of its 30 components gaining 1 point or more.

Wednesday’s Big Picture column commented, “With just two more trading sessions left in 2023 ahead of the three-day New Year’s holiday, there likely won’t be any earth-moving economic data this week. Weekly jobless claims come out early Thursday. In January, the stock market will greet fresh news on the jobs market for December as well as the latest on consumer prices.”

Now is an important time to read IBD’s The Big Picture column amid the continuing stock market gains. Be sure to read how to invest during the ongoing uptrend.

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Best Stocks To Buy And Watch

Magnificent Seven stock Alphabet (GOOGL), IBD Leaderboard stock Datadog (DDOG), Monday.com (MNDY), IBD SwingTrader issue Netflix (NFLX) and Snowflake (SNOW) — along with Dow Jones components Amgen (AMGN), Caterpillar (CAT) and Visa (V) — are among the best stocks to buy and watch in the current market rally.

Datadog is featured in this Stocks Near A Buy Zone column.

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Dow Jones: CAT Retakes Buy Point

Drug leader Amgen is nearing a 288.46 official buy point in a flat base amid a 0.9 rise Wednesday. Meanwhile, shares rose above an early entry at 282.73 last week. AMGN stock rose 0.3% early Thursday.

Heavy machinery giant Caterpillar closed further past a 293.88 buy trigger, with a 0.8% advance Wednesday. CAT stock gained 0.1% Thursday morning.

Payments leader Visa remains in buy range above a 250.06 entry in a cup base, according to IBD MarketSmith pattern recognition. V stock was unchanged Thursday.

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Alphabet, Netflix In Buy Range

Alphabet is in buy range past a 139.42 buy point in a cup with handle following last week’s breakout move. GOOGL stock rose 0.4% early Thursday.

IBD SwingTrader stock Netflix ranks among the best stocks to buy and watch, as it rose 0.1% Wednesday. The streaming giant broke out past a 482.70 buy point in a cup with handle last week. NFLX stock added 0.3% Thursday morning.

IBD Leaderboard stock Datadog is breaking out past an alternate handle buy trigger at 120.26 after big gains in recent weeks. DDOG stock was flat Thursday.

Monday.com continues to hold just above a 185.81 buy point in a cup with handle after a 0.2% gain Wednesday, according to IBD MarketSmith. MNDY stock was up slightly Thursday.

Artificial intelligence leader Snowflake is in buy range past a cup-with-handle’s 192.66 buy point. SNOW stock was up 0.4% Thursday, about 3% above the buy trigger.

Best Bets In Today’s Action

These are four best stocks to watch in today’s stock market, including a Dow Jones leader.

Company Name Symbol Correct Buy Point Type Of Buy Point
Applied Materials (AMAT) 145.86 Alternate entry
Caterpillar (CAT) 293.88 Cup base
Netflix (NFLX) 482.70 Cup with handle
Snowflake (SNOW) 192.66 Cup with handle
Source: IBD Data As Of Dec. 28, 2023

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Magnificent Seven Stocks: Nvidia, Tesla

Two more Magnificent Seven stocks Nvidia (NVDA) and Tesla (TSLA) gained 0.3% and 0.9%, respectively, in early trading Thursday.

Graphics-chip giant Nvidia climbed 0.3% Tuesday, still in a buy zone above a 476.09 double-bottom entry.

Electric-vehicle giant Tesla moved up 0.6% early Thursday after rallying 1.6% Tuesday. The move Tuesday put Tesla stock back above an early entry at 252.75 and into a buy zone. Tesla has a big double-bottom pattern with conventional buy point of 278.98

Dow Jones Leaders: Apple, Microsoft

Two Dow Jones stocks in the Magnificent Seven, Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT), traded higher ahead of today’s stock market open.

Apple stock moved up 0.1% Wednesday, snapping a four-day losing streak. Shares are testing their cup-with-handle entry of 192.93 following a Dec. 5 breakout. Apple shares were up 0.3% Thursday.

Microsoft stock inched lower Wednesday, ending a three-day win streak. Shares remain modestly above a 366.78 cup-base buy point. And the software giant was up 0.3% Thursday morning.

Be sure to follow Scott Lehtonen on X, formerly known as Twitter, at @IBD_SLehtonen for more on growth stocks and the Dow Jones Industrial Average.


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