S&P 500 Forecast: Day ahead outlook inflation fears linger as doves hit turbulence

Here is what you need to know on Thursday, February 25:

US equity markets look for direction on Thursday with mixed signals leading to steady and slightly lower trade. Inflation concerns haven't gone away as the US 10 year hits another year high at nearly 1.5%. This despite Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell's dovish testimony. Tech stocks staged a nice recovery on Wednesday as they recovered from heavy losses earlier in the week but it was the Dow that again led the gains with a 1.35% positive close. 

The dollar remains under pressure, Dollar Index is at 89.78, and EuroDollar now at 1.2223. Oil lost some ground after Wednesday's gains but remains strong at $63.15 for WTI. 

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European indices are mixed with the FTSE flat, EuroStoxx down 0.2%, and Dax up 0.1%.

US Futures are mostly lower with the Nasdaq again suffering, down 0.7%, S&P future is 0.3% lower and the dow is flat.

S&P 500 News

US Jobless claims show improvement from last month's disappointing number, 730k versus 861k expected.

US PCE Prices come in as expected at 1.4%, Durable Goods a strong 3.4% versus 0.5% expected.

Inflationary pressures continue in commodity markets with Copper hitting a 9 1/2 year high at $9513.50.

Moderna has shipped a new covid vaccine to the National Institute of Health for testing on the new South African variant, according to CNBC.

BioNTech and Pfizer said they are testing a third dose of their vaccine against new variants of the covid 19 virus. 

A US Navy warship sailed through the Taiwan strait on Thursday, China and the US have been at odds over the strait.

The FDA closed in on approving Johnson & Johnson's one shot covid vaccine.

President Biden is to sign an executive order focusing on semiconductor chips, large-capacity batteries for EV's rare earth minerals, and pharmaceuticals.

Gamestop is back as the stock explodes again on Wednesday and continues during Thursday pre-market. Gamestop shares are currently at $153.76 up 67%.

Goldman Sachs names 12 stocks with significant upside as economies re-open. Airbus, Amadeus, Diageo, H&M, Swatch, RELX, BP, British Land, Vinci, Flughafen Zurich, IAG, and WH Smith.

AnheuserBusch InBev (BUD) posted strong results but said rising commodity costs would hurt margins.

ViaCom CBS also reported strong numbers, beating EPS estimates by two cents.

Nvidia reported strong earnings EPS at $3.10 against a $2.81 estimate. Sales of $5 billion also beat estimates. It also posted a strong outlook. 

Tesla is to halt some production at its car assembly plant in California according to Bloomberg. The report states the assembly line would be down from Feb 22 until March 7. The report cites a person familiar with the matter.

Best Buy results scored a modest beat on EPS but sales for the holiday period disappointed.

Ups and Downs

Disney's price target was raised at Citi.

Nike was upgraded by HSBC.

NVIDIA's price target was raised at Needham and Cowen &Co.

Caterpillar's price target was raised at JPMorgan.

Lowes RBC raised its price target.

ViacomCBS Inc's target was raised at Needham.

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