U.S. President Donald Trump Demands Bigger Stimulus Checks
S&P 500 futures are gaining ground in premarket trading despite the surprising twist in the U.S. stimulus story.
U.S. President Donald Trump stated that $600 stimulus checks in the new coronavirus aid package were not big enough and demanded to raise them to $2,000 per person. He threatened to not sign the bill if the amount in stimulus checks is not increased.
Interestingly, U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi agreed with the proposal, but it remains to be seen if any changes to the aid package will be made. Currently, most markets ignore this surprising development, but the U.S. dollar managed to pare back its earlier losses.
Initial Jobless Claims Declined To 803,000
Initial Jobless Claims report indicated that 803,000 Americans filed for unemployment benefits in a week. Analysts expected Initial Jobless Claims of 885,000 so the report was much better than expected. Continuing Jobless Claims declined from 5.51 million to 5.34 million compared to analyst consensus of 5.56 million.
Both reports look strong compared to analyst expectations and may provide additional support to stocks. At the same time, it remains to be seen whether traders’ reaction to data will be strong in holiday-thinned trading.
Personal Spending Declined By 0.4% In November
In addition to the job market data, traders have a chance to evaluate Personal Income and Personal Spending reports for November. On a month-over-month basis, Personal Income declined by 1.1% while Personal Spending decreased by 0.4%. The soft data on both Personal Income and Personal Spending highlights the need for the new round of stimulus.
Durable Goods Orders increased by 0.9% month-over-month in November compared to analyst consensus which called for growth of 0.6%.
Later, U.S. will release New Home Sales data for November. New Home Sales are expected to decline by 0.3% month-over-month. Meanwhile, Consumer Sentiment is projected to grow from 76.9 in November to 81.3 in December.
For a look at all of today’s economic events, check out our economic calendar.