Dow futures drop 200+ points as economic, virus fears linger

Stock futures fell Tuesday morning, with the S&P 500 poised to snap a five-day winning streak as investors considered prospects of a drawn-out economic recovery alongside an ongoing rise in virus cases.

The declines in futures on the three major US indices tracked drops in European equities, after the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development issued a dismal economic forecast given risks of a second wave of Covid-19. The unemployment rate among the OECD’s 37 member countries edged down from a 10-year high of 8.5% in April to 8.4% in May.

German industrial production data also came in weaker than expected Tuesday, with the country’s output rising 7.8% in May after a 17.5% drop in April, but missing consensus expectations for 11.1%.

US stocks during the regular session Monday powered higher, with the Nasdaq Composite rising to a record high. Big tech stocks led advances, and Amazon (AMZN) rocketed above $3,000 per share for the first time ever and held onto these gains during the pre-market session. Other tech names including Apple, Microsoft, Netflix, Nvidia and Adobe also rose to record levels.

Domestic economic data Monday morning showed a much stronger than expected rebound in US service sector activity in June, underscoring a recovery in the industries hardest hit by the pandemic. Airlines and cruise stocks rose during the regular session, but pared some gains as overnight trading kicked off.

Still, an eruption of cases in the South and West continued over the holiday weekend and into this week, leaving the risk that ensuing business re-closures would jeopardize the pace of the recovery. The mayor of Miami-Dade in Florida said he intends to close restaurants and gyms again on Wednesday. Cases throughout Florida rose 3.2% on a one-day basis as of Monday, coming in below the state’s seven-day average increase of 5.1%, but holding at a high level relative to other regions.

Arizona, another new hot spot, reported a 3.4% one-day increase in cases, which was also below its seven-day average.

9:09 a.m. ET: Novavax shares spike more than 30% after announcing $1.6 billion in federal funding for Covid-19 vaccine development

Biotech company Novavax (NVAX) shares jumped more than 30% in early trading Tuesday after announcing it received $1.6 billion in funding from the US Operation Warp Speed to develop and manufacturing a Covid-19 vaccine.

The funding amount is the largest granted so far through Operation Warp Speed, a federal program aimed at fast-tracking the development of a coronavirus vaccine to months rather than years. Other earlier recipients of the funds were companies including AstraZeneca, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson 

With the funds, Novavax is set to begin a late-stage clinical study of its vaccine candidate as soon as this fall, with up to 30,000 subjects. Its phase 1/2 (one-two) trials began in May in Australia, and Novavax expects to have results from this at the end of July. The company is looking to begin delivering 100 million doses for Americans as soon as late 2020.

Shares of Novavax were up nearly 1,900% for the year to date through Monday’s close.

7:21 a.m. ET Tuesday: Stock futures drop, Dow futures give back 200+ points

Here were the main moves in markets, as of 7:21 a.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,144.00, down 28 points or 0.88%

  • Dow futures (YM=F): 25,908.00, down 271 points, or 1.04%

  • Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 10,549.75, down 48.75 points, or 0.46

  • Crude (CL=F): -$0.48 (-1.18%) to $40.15 a barrel

  • Gold (GC=F): -$9.90 (-0.55%) to $1,783.60 per ounce

  • 10-year Treasury (^TNX): -0.8 bps to yield 0.676%

6:15 p.m. ET Monday: Stock futures edge lower

Here were the main moves at the start of the overnight session for U.S. equity futures, as of 6:15 p.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,167.75, down 4.25 points or 0.13%

  • Dow futures (YM=F): 26,140.00, down 39 points, or 0.15%

  • Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 10,598.00, down 0.5 points, or little changed

A trader wears a face mask on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) following traders testing positive for Coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in New York, U.S., March 19, 2020. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson

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