1. Dow set to bounce after Friday’s 730-point plunge
Dow futures were pointing to a more than 150-point gain at Monday’s open, a small bounce after the Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged 730 points, or 2.8%, on Friday, knocking blue chips down 3.3% last week. Following initial declines overnight, stock futures turned higher early Monday despite surging U.S. coronavirus cases. The Dow, with two days left in June, could break its two-month winning streak. However, the benchmark, as of Friday’s close, was up just over 14% for the second quarter.
The holiday-shortened week ahead on Wall Street brings pending home sales Monday and S&P/Case-Shiller home prices Tuesday. Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin testify before the House Financial Services Committee on Tuesday. The ADP’s latest private sector jobs report is out Wednesday. One day early, on Thursday, the government reports its June employment report. The stock market is closed Friday, July 3, in observance of Independence Day.
2. Florida, Texas pull back part of their reopening plans
With more than half the states across the U.S. reporting spikes in coronavirus cases, Florida saw a record-breaking 9,636 new infections on Saturday, with another 8,577 on Sunday. Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Sunday blamed interactions among young people. Miami-Dade and Broward counties are closing their beaches for the July 4 weekend.
Vice President Mike Pence met on Sunday with GOP Texas Gov. Greg Abbott who said the rising infections in his state have taken a “very swift and very dangerous turn” over the past few weeks. On Friday, Texas again shut down bars and limited restaurant dining, a day after reporting a state record high confirmed positive tests of 5,996.
3. Record-breaking daily cases push total U.S. infections to nearly 2.55 million
The U.S. reported more than 45,000 cases of coronavirus on Friday, a record-breaking daily increase. Saturday saw over 42,600 new cases and Sunday saw more than 38,800 new cases. Total U.S. cases climbed to nearly 2.55 million, according to data from Johns Hopkins University on Monday. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told NBC News on Sunday the “window is closing” for the United States to halt the Covid-19 spikes, particularly in southern and western states. Total global cases approached 10.2 million. The death rate worldwide and in the U.S. stands at just under 5%.
4. Shale pioneer Chesapeake Energy files for bankruptcy
Chesapeake Energy, a pioneer in the U.S. shale revolution, filed for bankruptcy protection Sunday as the company and industry more broadly has been rocked by a drop in oil and gas prices during the coronavirus pandemic. The heavily indebted Chesapeake has been in trouble for some time, saying back in May that it had concerns regarding its long-term viability. At its peak, Chesapeake had 175 operating rigs, with operations across the U.S. including in Texas, Louisiana, Pennsylvania and Ohio. However, the company took on a lot of debt to fuel its rapid expansion. Chesapeake’s downturn is not unique. Whiting Petroleum, another once great driller, filed for bankruptcy protection in April.
5. Boeing, FAA reportedly to begin 737 Max test flights
Pilots and test crew members from the Federal Aviation Administration and Boeing are scheduled to begin a three-day certification test campaign for the 737 Max on Monday, people familiar with the matter told Reuters. The test is a pivotal moment in Boeing’s worst-ever corporate crisis, compounded by the coronavirus pandemic that’s decimated air travel and jet demand. The 737 Max fleet was grounded in March 2019 after two crashes in five months killed 346 people in Ethiopia and Indonesia. Test pilots will reportedly intentionally trigger the reprogrammed stall-prevention software, which was faulted in both crashes. Shares of Boeing, which have been slammed over 45% in 2020, were rising more than 3% in Monday’s premarket.