5 issues to know earlier than the inventory market opens Thursday, May 16

News Update – Pre-Markets

Here are the most important news items that investors need to start their trading day:

1. Back to rally

We’re in record territory again. All three major indexes hit new highs Wednesday and added to their strong 2024 performances. The broad market S&P 500 index gained 1.17%, breaking above 5,300 for the first time, to end at 5,308.15. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite, meanwhile, rose 1.40% while the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 349.89 points, or 0.88%. Stocks got a boost from a lighter-than-expected consumer price index report, which lifted hopes for lower Fed rates. Follow live market updates.

2. Walmart’s wins

A Walmart Supercenter cart sits outside of the store on February 20, 2024, in Hallandale Beach, Florida. 

Joe Raedle | Getty Images

Walmart on Thursday beat quarterly revenue and earnings expectations and said it expects to hit the high-end or slightly top its previous full-year guidance. The big-box retailer attributed its success to making significant e-commerce gains, driving profits with newer businesses like advertising and winning over more high-income shoppers. Walmart is the nation’s largest retailer and private employer, which mean it’s often viewed as a bellwether for the U.S. economy. But it’s generally done better than other retailers during an inflationary period because it sells staples like groceries and has a reputation for being value-oriented.

3. The secret’s out

Warren Buffett speaks during the Berkshire Hathaway Annual Shareholders Meeting in Omaha, Nebraska, May 4, 2024.


Berkshire Hathaway finally revealed a stock purchase it’s been keeping secret for multiple quarters. The conglomerate, which had requested confidential treatment, bought 26 million shares of Zurich-based insurer Chubb for a stake worth $6.7 billion. Shares of Chubb rose nearly 10% in premarket trading Thursday after the stake was revealed. It’s now Berkshire’s ninth biggest holding, as of the end of March. Berkshire already has a large footprint in the insurance industry.

4. Go long

The Netflix logo is displayed above its corporate offices on January 24, 2024 in Los Angeles, California. 

Mario Tama | Getty Images

Netflix is taking its first real step into live sports. The streaming platform will show two NFL games on Christmas Day this year, and will have at least one matchup in both 2025 and 2026. Netflix didn’t disclose how much it paid for the rights to stream the games, but they could be a major draw for advertisers as it looks to boost profits by raising subscription prices and pushing users toward an ad-tier membership. The company also said Wednesday that its cheaper, ad-supported tier now has 40 million global monthly active users, nearly double the 23 million reported in January.

5. Uber roll outs

The logo of Uber is seen at a temporary showroom at the Promenade road during the World Economic Forum 2023, in the Alpine resort of Davos, Switzerland, on Jan. 20, 2023.

Arnd Wiegmann | Reuters

Uber on Wednesday announced several new features that aim to help customers save money on rides and food. The product updates, unveiled at an annual showcase in New York City, include the rollout of Uber Shuttle, where riders can use Uber to book seats on a local shuttle for trips to the airport, work and live events, such as sports games and concerts. Uber Caregiver, meanwhile, will let customers book rides for people they care for and order medical supplies and groceries on their behalf. Other new initiatives include discounted memberships for students, Costco perks, the ability to schedule UberX Share rides and “lists” on Uber Eats.

— CNBC’s Lisa Kailai Han, Melissa Repko, Yun Li, Ece Yildirim, Jacob Pramuk, Sarah Whitten, Alex Sherman, Lillian Rizzo and Ashley Capoot contributed to this report.

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