PayPal, eBay, Qualcomm: What to Watch When the Stock Market Opens Today

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U.S. stock futures wavered Thursday ahead of fresh data that is likely to show the number of people seeking unemployment benefits remains elevated.

Futures tied to the S&P 500 were nearly unchanged. Contracts linked to the Nasdaq-100 climbed 0.2%, pointing to a rise in technology stocks. Read our full market wrap here.

What’s Coming Up

Earnings are due from Ford, F 3.13% Peloton, PTON -0.38% Gilead Sciences, GILD -0.94% Snap SNAP 0.66% and T-Mobile US TMUS -1.91% after the close.

U.S. jobless claims, due at 8:30 a.m. ET, are expected to fall to 830,000 in the week ended Jan. 30 from 847,000 a week earlier. Labor productivity data, also due at 8:30 a.m., is expected to fall 2.8% in the fourth quarter from the prior quarter. Factory orders for December at 10 a.m. are expected to rise 0.7% from a month earlier.

Market Movers to Watch

Moves in the stocks favored by Reddit users were relatively subdued Thursday morning, giving traders a moment to exhale. GameStop GME 2.68% was up 4%, AMC AMC 14.71% added 2.6%, and both Koss KOSS 27.95% and Bed Bath & Beyond BBBY 10.40% edged down less than 1%. For our live blog of the action, follow this link.

—Online marketplace eBay EBAY 1.24% ‘s shares shot more than 10% higher after its fourth-quarter results and first-quarter financial projections beat Wall Street estimates.

Qualcomm QCOM -1.51% ‘s shares dropped 6.7% premarket. The mobile-phone chip maker said its quarterly sales rose 62% from the prior-year period to $8.24 billion, while its net income more than doubled.

—U.S.-traded shares of Royal Dutch Shell fell 2% after the Anglo-Dutch oil company reported a fourth-quarter loss as it continued to grapple with the fallout of the pandemic but said it would raise its dividend.

PayPal PYPL 1.12% ‘s shares climbed 5.1% premarket. The company’s profit tripled in the fourth quarter, fueled by accelerated adoption of digital payments during the pandemic.

PayPal advertised its contactless payment technology on a billboard in New York, Dec. 28, 2020 .

Photo: Richard B. Levine/Zuma Press

MetLife MET 0.91% ‘s shares added 4.3% and fellow insurer Allstate ALL -1.62% ‘s gained 1.9%. Allstate’s earnings benefited from a sharp reduction in car wrecks, while MetLife’s results were bolstered by people skipping dentist visits.

Market Fact

Trading volumes on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday were at their lowest since Jan. 21, as 4,900,085,470 shares changed hands. That’s less than half the number of shares that traded on the highest volume day this year on Jan. 27.

Chart of the Day

The Reddit-fueled frenzy in stocks such is prompting calls for regulators to reconsider a decades-old practice in the U.S. stock market: payment for order flow.

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