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Dow Poised For Broad-Based Rally; Netflix, China Futures Surge | Stock News & Stock Market Analysis

Stock futures veered sharply higher Tuesday, as a global market advance launched in China and Japan added to positive early company news in the U.S.

X Futures for the Dow Jones industrial average rumbled almost 1% higher, with Merck (MRK) and UnitedHealth Group (UNH) hammering out powerful early gains.

Nasdaq 100 futures scaled up 0.7%.  S&P 500 futures were 0.5% higher. Small caps were participating in the early gains, with Russell 2000 futures up 0.6%.

Overseas, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index punched up 1.8% Tuesday to a record closing high. It remained just a fraction below its 2007 record peak.  In Japan, Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 followed with a 1% gain, putting the index almost even with its Jan. 9 high.

In Europe, Frankfurt’s DAX rallied 1% and the the CAC-40 in Paris traded up 0.3%, while London’s FTSE 100 battled thin losses near midday.

Merck, United Health Lead Dow; China Stocks Climb

Merck jumped out to the early lead among Blue Chips, up 2.7% after announcing that its Keytruda produced positive results in a phase 3 trial as a first-line treatment against lung cancer. Merck shares closed last week up 9% from a mid-November low, climbing the right side of a four-month consolidation.

UnitedHealth Group reported a strong fourth-quarter performance and promptly took a leading slot among Dow industrial stocks, up 2.5% in premarket trade.  The stock ended Friday just over 1% below a flat base buy point at 231.87.

Also among Dow stocks, IBM (IBM), Procter & Gamble (PG), Boeing (BA) and Visa (V) all posted premarket gains of more than 1%, suggesting an early, broad-based rally.

Apple (AAPL) rose 0.6%, as it continues to wrestle resistance near 177, but still in buy range above a 176.34 buy point. Netflix (NFLX) led the FANG stocks, up 1.5% and looking to add more margin above its 204.48 buy point.

A number of China-based stocks were in motion ahead of the open. TAL Education (TAL) rose more than 2%. The IBD 50 stock is below a 34.30 buy point in a cup-with-handle base.

Baozun (BZUN) climbed almost 2%. The provider of online retail services finished Friday just a fraction below a 37.07 buy point in a double-bottom base.

Big banks were part of Tuesday’s positive news, with Comerica (CMA) up 1.5% after reporting its Q4 results. Citigroup (C) traded 0.8% higher, ahead of its quarterly report, due out at 8 a.m. ET.

Bitcoin Stumbles

Bitcoin traded just above $12,200, almost 13% below its price late Friday. Stocks associated with cryptocurrencies and blockchain were also under early pressure:

  • Riot Blockchain (RIOT): -9.4%
  • Mara Patent Group (MARA): -5.3%
  • Bitcoin Invstment Trust (GBTC): -1.1%
  • Overstock.com (OSTK): -4.5%
  • Eastman Kodak (KODK):  -6%

After Hours Earnings Reports

Adtran (ADTN), railroad CSX (CSX) and Pinnacle Financial (PNFP) are all scheduled to report after today’s close.

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