5 things to know before the stock market opens Thursday, July 22

Here are the top news, trends, and analysis investors need to start their trading day:

1. Wall Street plans to extend its recovery rally until day three

A Wall Street sign is pictured outside the New York Stock Exchange amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in the Manhattan neighborhood of New York on April 16, 2021.

Carlo Allegri | Reuters

US stock futures indicated a third straight day of earnings, which made Monday’s big sell-off seem like a distant memory. The Dow rose another 286 points, or 0.8%, on Wednesday. Coupled with Tuesday’s 549 point gain, the average of 30 stocks turned positive for the week. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq also gained nearly 1% on Wednesday. All three stock benchmarks were less than 1% from their last record closing times on July 12th prior to Wall Street opening Thursday. Investors appear to have shaken off their immediate concerns about the spread of the Delta variant and the increase in Covid cases. The 10-year government bond yield rose again to 1.3% on Thursday after hitting a 5½-month low of nearly 1.13% earlier this week. Bond yields move in the opposite direction to bond prices.

2. Another low of the Covid era expected for initial jobless claims

Economists expect 350,000 initial jobless claims for the past week. That would be a new Covid era low. The government will release its weekly claims report at 8:30 a.m. ET, an hour before the opening bell. In the previous week, 360,000 new applications for unemployment benefit were submitted, the highest number since March 2020.

At 10 p.m. ET, the National Association of Realtors releases its June Existing Home Sales Report. Economists expect an increase of 2.2% to 5.93 million units per year. Existing home sales were down 0.9% in May.

3. AT&T exceeds estimates for cellular subscriber growth in 5G demand

A pedestrian walks outside an AT&T location in New York.

Scott Mlyn | CNBC

AT&T on Thursday surpassed analyst estimates for the monthly phone bill that paid new subscribers in the second quarter, fueled by the move more Americans to 5G. WarnerMedia, the company’s media unit, gained 2.8 million US subscribers in the quarter for its premium channel HBO and the streaming platform HBO Max. In May, AT&T agreed to spin off its media holdings with Discovery and turn it into a deal that is expected to close in mid-2022. AT & T’s earnings per share of 89 cents exceeded expectations, as did sales of just over $ 44 billion. Before the IPO, the shares rose by around 1.5%.

4. American airlines from the Southwest are seeing a huge leap in sales

An American Airlines aircraft lands at Miami International Airport in Miami, Florida on June 16, 2021.

Joe Raedle | Getty Images

American Airlines posted a profit for the second quarter on Thursday as federal aid and travel demand increased. The Fort Worth-based airline reported net income of $ 19 million and posted losses for five consecutive quarters. Adjusted for one-time effects, however, American lost $ 1.69 per share, less than expected. Revenue rose 360% year over year to $ 7.48 billion after the Covid collapse last year. Revenue was still down 35% compared to the second quarter of 2019.

A Southwest Airlines Boeing 737-7H4 jet rolls for the gate after landing at Midway International Airport in Chicago, Illinois on April 6, 2021.

Kamil Krzaczynski | AFP | Getty Images

Southwest also reported a jump in sales for the quarter. Revenue for the Dallas-based airline rose nearly 300% year over year to $ 4 billion. That was still 32% less than in the same period of the previous year. Net income for the second quarter was $ 348 million, compared to a loss of $ 915 million a year earlier. On an adjusted basis, Southwest lost 35 cents a share, more than expected. In the premarket, Southwest and American stocks were lower.

5. Fauci says people who have been vaccinated might consider masks indoors

People wearing protective masks shop at a Walmart store in Hallandale Beach, Florida on May 18, 2021.

Joe Raedle | Getty Images

White House senior medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci said people who are fully vaccinated should consider wearing masks indoors as a precaution against the rapidly spreading Delta variant in the US. The more transmissible Delta variant now accounts for around 83% of the sequenced Covid-19 cases in the country, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The portability of variants from the original strain has increased, and some have been shown to decrease the effectiveness of vaccines.

– Reuters contributed to this report. Follow all market activity like a pro on CNBC Pro. Get the latest on the pandemic with coronavirus coverage from CNBC.

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