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What to Watch Today: Wall Street Looks Lower on Final Day of Dismal January Trading

Source: NYSE

BY THE NUMBERS

U.S. stock futures were mostly lower Monday, heading into the final trading day of January. Despite Friday's 2.4% rally, in the midst of weeks of turmoil, the S&P 500 is headed for its worst month since March 2020 when the Covid pandemic was declared. However, Friday's rally did pull all three stock benchmarks into positive territory for last week. (CNBC)

* Markets saw wild swings ahead of a huge week for Cramer's Investing Club stock earnings (CNBC)
* Here's an investors' guide to reports from Alphabet, Amazon, Meta and more (CNBC Pro)

This past Friday, the Dow on Friday rose 564 points, or 1.7%, and the Nasdaq added 3.1%. But like the S&P 500, the Dow is tracking for its worst month since October 2020 and the Nasdaq is on pace for its worst month going back to October 2008 in the throes of the financial crisis that led to the Great Recession. The Nasdaq remained in a deep correction. (CNBC)

IN THE NEWS TODAY

The flood of major companies reporting earnings takes a pause Monday, before continuing in earnest for the remainder of the week. After Chevron (CVX) missed on earnings Friday, Tuesday brings Exxon Mobil (XOM) as well as Google parent Alphabet (GOOGL) and General Motors (GM). Facebook parent Meta Platforms (FB) is out Wednesday, with Amazon (AMZN), Merck (MRK) and Ford (F) a day later. (CNBC Pro)

The government this coming Friday is set to release its latest employment report. Economists polled by Dow Jones expect 178,000 nonfarm payrolls were added last month. Brian Deese, President Joe Biden's top economic advisor, told CNBC last week that Covid case spikes in early January could skew the employment data.

* 10-year Treasury yield trades around 1.8% as investors look ahead to jobs data (CNBC)

Audio streaming giant Spotify (SPOT) said Sunday it will add content advisories to any material mentioning Covid, and direct its users to public health sites for more information. Spotify is facing a declining stock price from backlash over its decision to continue to air the popular podcast, "The Joe Rogan Experience," despite concerns that it is spreading coronavirus misinformation. (CNBC)

* Spotify faces a Facebook moment as musicians boycott over Rogan podcast (CNBC)

Rogan, also on Sunday, posted a video on Instagram, saying he agrees with the content advisories before podcasts containing Covid commentary. He also said he'd be open to following guests with controversial opinions on Covid with other experts who have differing views. Neil Young began the boycott of Spotify last week.

With oil prices trading around seven-year highs against the backdrop of political tensions in Eastern Europe, Biden is set to meet at the White House on Monday with the ruling leader of oil-rich nation Qatar. Biden hopes Qatar, who aided in last summer's U.S. military evacuations in Afghanistan, will once again help the West as it faces the prospect of a European energy crunch if Russia invades Ukraine. (AP)

* As White House works to expedite Afghan resettlement, thousands remain on military bases (CNBC)

STOCKS TO WATCH

Citrix Systems (CTXS) is near a deal to be taken private for roughly $13 billion, according to multiple media reports. The deal would see the cloud computing company acquired by Vista Equity Partners and an affiliate of Elliott Management for $104 per share. That's below the Friday closing price for Citrix of $105.55 a share, with the stock up over the past few months on reports of takeover talks. Its shares fell 3.4% in premarket trading.

BlackBerry (BB) tumbled 6% in the premarket after it announced a deal to sell its non-core patent assets for $600 million. The patents primarily involve mobile devices, messaging and wireless networking, with patents essential to its current core business not involved in the deal. The buyer is Catapult IP innovations, a special purpose vehicle formed specifically to buy those patents.

Netflix (NFLX) added 2.5% in the premarket after Citi upgraded the stream service's stock to "buy" from "neutral." Citi said that following the recent sell-off, prevailing equity values don't reflect material subscriber growth prospects or improving subscriber economics beyond 2023.

Beyond Meat (BYND) was double-upgraded to "overweight" from "underweight" at Barclays, which also increased its price target to $80 per share from $70. Barclays cites the company's growth potential, especially in the U.S. retail market. Beyond Meat jumped 4.4% in the premarket.

Walgreens (WBA) has kicked off the sales process for its Boots international drug store unit, according to people with knowledge of the matter who spoke to Bloomberg. A number of buyout firms, including Sycamore Partners, are said to be mulling bids for the unit. Walgreens fell 1% in premarket action.

Otis Worldwide (OTIS) reported quarterly profit of 72 cents per share, 4 cents a share above estimates. Revenue essentially came in line with forecasts. The elevator and escalator maker also said sales growth would slow this year and forecast adjusted 2022 earnings per share at $3.20 to $3.30, compared to a consensus estimate of $3.29 a share.

Marathon Petroleum (MPC) is down in premarket trading, following a Reuters report that the United Steelworkers Union rejected a contract offer from the energy producer. The offer would have given refinery and chemical plant workers a 4% pay increase over three years, according to people familiar with the matter. Marathon fell 1.1% in premarket trading.

Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) was upgraded to "overweight" from "neutral" at Piper Sandler, which cites a number of factors including valuation for the maker of surgical equipment. The stock had fallen nearly 8% on Jan. 21 following its quarterly earnings and remains at roughly the same level. Intuitive Surgical added 1.2% in premarket action.

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