Jobs Report Looms, Japan PM Resigns, Virgin Galactic Grounded – 5 Things You Must Know

Here are five things you must know for Friday, September 3:

1. — Stock Futures Edge Lower After Jobs Report

U.S. equity futures edged lower Friday, following on from another twin set of record closes for the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq last night, following an August jobs report that showed a sha 

The Bureau for Labor Statistics said 235,000 new jobs were created last month, with headline unemployment rate falling to a post-pandemic low of 5.2%. The August tally was firmly ahead of the Street consensus forecast of 750,000.

The BLS noted that hourly wages were up 0.6%, and 4.3% on the year, to $30.73 per hour, with both figures coming in ahead of Street forecasts. However, the BLS revised its July jobs addition estimate to 1,035,000 from its original estimate of 943,000.

Futures contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average are now indicating a modest 20 point decline following the data release, with those tied to the S&P 500 priced to fall around 1.5 points from last night’s record high close of 4,537.01 points.

Tech stocks are also on the move, but with benchmark 10-year Treasury note yields rising to 1.32%, the Nasdaq Composite index is set to dip around 15 points at the start of trading.

2. — Japan PM Suga Steps Down, Stocks Soar

Japan’s beleaguered Prime Minister, Yoshihide Suga, surprised markets in Asia Friday by announcing plans to step down in the coming weeks, ending an unpopular tenue at the head of the world’s third largest economy.

Suga, 72, took over the office of Prime Minister following the resignation of Shinzo Abe but has struggled to maintain the initial enthusiasm for his leadership in the face of a surge in coronavirus infections and the perceived mis-handling of the economy. Suga’s successor is likely to face national elections in October. 

Japan’s Nikkei 225 surged 2.05% to close at a three-decade high of 29,128.11 points following news of Suga’s departure, with investors betting his replacement could trigger a fresh round of fiscal stimulus for the pandemic hit — and export focused — economy.

3. — Broadcom Sees 5G Bets Boosting Revenues

Broadcom  (AVGO) – Get Broadcom Inc. Report shares edged only modestly higher Friday after the network equipment and semiconductor maker forecast stronger-than-expected current quarter revenues after beating Wall Street earnings forecasts late last night.

Broadcom, a major supplier to Apple AAPL, is betting on a ramp-up in 5G investments to boost sales in its wireless division, and sees November-quarter revenues of around $7.35 billion.

For the three months ending on August 1, Broadcom earned a Street-beating $6.88 per share on sales of $6.755 billion.

“Looking ahead, we see service providers like AT&T T, British Telecom, and even Deutsche Telekom, deploying in increasing volumes next-generation last-mile fiber connectivity to homes in the U.S. and globally,” CEO Hock Tan told investors on a conference call late Thursday. “These multiyear and multibillion-dollar investments by these operators and attach to every one of these fiber nodes, you need WiFi connectivity for the last 100 feet within the homes, and we lead the global transition to WiFi 6 today.”

Broadcom shares were marked 0.8% higher in pre-market trading Friday to indicate an opening bell price of $495.90 each. 

4. — Virgin Galactic Grounded

U.S. officials grounded Billionaire Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic ‘SpaceShipTwo’ from further flights la following a probe into the craft’s decent from its maiden flight into space in early July.

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration said SpaceShipTwo “deviated from its Air Traffic Control clearance as it returned to Spaceport America” in New Mexico, adding that it won’t permit the plane to make further flights until it is satisfied there was no public danger during the July 11 voyage — known as ‘Unity 22’ — the first ever for a commercial spacecraft.

Virgin Galactic shares were marked 0.23% lower in pre-market trading Friday to indicate an opening bell price of $25.93 each. 

5. —  Ohio Governor Seeks Answers in Bishop Sycamore Fiasco

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine has called for an investigation into the football program — as well as the mysterious origins — of the now infamous Bishop Sycamore High School.

Bishop Sycamore, a newly-established online academy that appears to have no fixed address, little funding an no classrooms or teachers, runs a high school football program in Columbus, Ohio that made its way onto Walt Disney’s DIS ESPN last week in a nationally-televised game against Florida-based powerhouse IMG Academy.

After losing 58-0 in a game that was even more lopsided than the final score, reports began to surface about the nature of the school, the age of the players involved and background of the coaches and administrators associated with what many now are calling a ‘fake school’.

“Like many Ohioans, I am concerned by the recent reports and questions raised about Bishop Sycamore,” DeWine said in a statement. “I have asked the Ohio Department of Education to conduct an investigation into Bishop Sycamore to ensure compliance with Ohio law and to ensure the school is providing the educational opportunities Ohio students deserve.”

Harry Byrne

Harry Byrne

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