A man wearing a mask walks by the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on March 17, 2020 at Wall Street in New York City.
Johannes Eisele | AFP | Getty Images
U.S. stock futures rose early Monday morning as investors braced for a big week of corporate earnings and lawmakers continued coronavirus stimulus negotiations.
The moves in the futures market came as gold prices soared to a new record high. Spot gold traded as high as $1,943.9275 before paring gains to change hands at around $1,930.91. Those levels eclipsed the previous record high price set in September 2011.
McDonald’s, Pfizer, Alphabet, Apple and AMD are among the companies slated to release their latest quarterly figures this week.
Through Friday’s close 128 S&P 500 companies had reported earnings, with 81% beating analyst expectations, according to Refinitiv. However, overall S&P 500 earnings have fallen more than 40% from the year-earlier period as the coronavirus pandemic takes a big bite out of corporate profits.
“Stock prices have soared even as analysts’ consensus expected earnings estimates have plunged,” said Ed Yardeni, chief investment strategist at Yardeni Research. “These estimates have started to show signs of bottoming in the past few weeks. However, any recovery could be dampened or even aborted if the COVID-19 case count continues to mount and state governors slow or reverse the lifting of lockdown restrictions.”
Traders also turned their eyes to Washington as lawmakers tried to push forward on another coronavirus stimulus package.
On Sunday, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Republicans had finalized a bill for about $1 trillion in coronavirus relief funds. Mnuchin added he hopes the proposal can find bipartisan support.
However, Jefferies Chief Economist Aneta Markowska warned there “is still a wide gap between the GOP and Democrats, especially on unemployment benefits and state and local gov’t aid. Closing the gap will probably take more than a week, which means that an agreement is unlikely to be reached before July 31.”
White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow shed some light on some of the measures included in the GOP proposal, noting: “There’s a $1,200 check coming, that’s going to be part of the new package.”
Wall Street was coming off a losing week as shares of major tech companies struggled and U.S.-China tensions rose. The Dow and S&P 500 each snapped a three-week winning streak. The Nasdaq, meanwhile, posted its first back-to-back weekly losses since May.
Subscribe to CNBC PRO for exclusive insights and analysis, and live business day programming from around the world.