Stocks Higher, Meta, Rivian, Mastercard, Tesla and Ukraine In Focus – Five Things To Know

Stock futures jump as October relief rally continues; Meta Scales Back In NY; Rivian Hits Delivery Targets; Ukraine Ambassador tells Elon Musk to F— Off.

Here are five things you must know for Tuesday, October 4:

1. — Stock Futures Higher as October Relief Rally Enters Day 2

U.S. equity futures were firmly higher on Tuesday after posting a broad-based rally on Monday that snapped a sharp losing streak that saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 rack up their worst monthly losses since March 2020.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 765.38 points, or 2.7%, to 29490.89. The S&P 500 added 92.81 points, or 2.6%, to 3678.43 and the Nasdaq Composite rose 239.82 points, or 2.3%, to 10815.43. Both the S&P and Nasdaq notched their best first day of any quarter since 2009.

The broad-based gains came after stocks closed out a losing week, month and quarter on Friday, when all three indexes closed at their lowest levels of the year.

Stocks have sustained deep losses for the first nine months of 2022 as central bank officials have increasingly made clear that inflation remains a threat and that interest-rate increases and monetary tightening will continue.

Indeed, inflation prospects, as well as planned central bank rate hikes, remain the market’s central concern, with the VIX index remaining elevated. Wall Street’s so-called ‘fear gauge’ slipped to 29.33 after touching 32.88 on Monday, its highest since mid-June.

The VIX, which tracks the 30-day implied volatility of the S&P 500, hadn’t closed above 30 since June 16. The index looks at prices of options on the S&P 500 to track the level of fear on Wall Street.

Meanwhile, Treasury yields traded lower on Tuesday, with the benchmark 10-year Treasury down 6 basis points to 3.5854% at around 4 a.m. ET, after having surpassed the 4%-mark last week. The yield on the policy-sensitive 2-year Treasury fell to 4.0224% as it traded 8 basis points lower. Bond yields move inversely to prices.

Stocks in Asia jumped, with Japan’s Nikkei 225 index closing nearly 3% higher and South Korea’s Kospi rising 2.5%. In Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 index climbed 3.75% after the country’s central bank surprised investors with a smaller-than-expected 25-basis-point interest-rate increase. Markets in Hong Kong and Mainland China were closed on Tuesday for public holidays.

European stocks meantime, were solidly in the green, with the German Dax and French CAC both up more than 2% and the FTSE 100 up more than 1%.

On Wall Street, futures contracts tied to the S&P 500 are indicating a 92 point opening bell gain, while linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average are priced for a 365 point gain. Futures tied to the tech-focused Nasdaq are indicating a 239 point move to the upside.

2. — Meta to Shutter New York Office Amid Cutbacks

Meta Platforms  (META) – Get Meta Platforms Inc. Report is planning to close one of its offices in New York after scaling down its expansion plans in the city, according to people familiar with the matter.

Meta has been consolidating its New York workforce, building out offices in Hudson Yards and moving ahead with plans for the Farley Building near Pennsylvania Station. The company has been dialing back some of its growth plans in the city, though, according to reports from Bloomberg.

“Two twenty-five Park Avenue South has served as a great bridge space to get us to our new offices at Hudson Yards and Farley,” Meta spokesperson Jamila Reeves said Monday in an emailed statement to Bloomberg. “We are working to ensure we’re making focused, balanced investments to support our most strategic long-term priorities.”

Meta remains “firmly committed to New York and further anchoring our local footprint,” she added.

The planned closure comes as Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg seeks to make sweeping changes including reorganizing teams and reducing headcount at the company for the first time.

3. — Rivian on Track to Deliver 25,000 Electric Pick-Ups This Year

Electric vehicle maker Rivian Automotive  (RIVN) – Get Rivian Automotive Inc. Report said Monday that it pumped out more than 7,000 vehicles in the third quarter, its highest quarterly total to date, and that it remains on track to churn out 25,000 vehicles in 2022.

In a statement, Rivian said it produced a total of 7,363 vehicles at its Illinois factory in the third quarter, and that 6,584 vehicles were delivered to its customers during the period.

Rivian currently makes the R1T pickup, the R1S SUV and delivery vans for Amazon AMZN at its factory in Normal, Illinois. The company didn’t break out production or deliveries by model.

Rivian had originally expected to build 50,000 vehicles in 2022. But it halved that guidance in March, saying at the time that global supply-chain issues had “added a layer of complexity” to its plan to increase production.

Shares of Rivian were up about 7% in pre-market trading on Tuesday. 

4. — Mastercard Preps to Launch New Crypto Security Platform

Mastercard  (MA) – Get Mastercard Incorporated Report on Tuesday will debut a new piece of software that helps banks identify and cut off transactions from fraud-prone crypto exchanges, CNBC reported on Tuesday.

Called Crypto Secure, the system uses “sophisticated” artificial intelligence algorithms to determine the risk of crime associated with crypto exchanges on the Mastercard payment network, according to CNBC. The system relies on data from the blockchain, a public record of crypto transactions, as well as other sources.

The service is powered by CipherTrace, a blockchain security startup Mastercard acquired last year. Based in Menlo Park, California, CipherTrace helps businesses and government agencies investigate illicit transactions involving cryptocurrencies. Its main rivals are New York firm Chainalysis and Elliptic, which is based in London.

Mastercard is launching the service against a backdrop of growing crime in the nascent digital asset market. The amount of crypto entering wallets with known criminal connections surged to a record $14 billion last year, according to data from blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis. And 2022 has seen a spate of high-profile hacks and scams targeting crypto investors.

5. 3. — Ukraine Ambassador Tells Elon Musk to F— Off

American tech billionaire Elon Musk drew the public ire of Ukraine’s top officials Monday after the Tesla  (TSLA) – Get Tesla Inc. Report CEO tweeted what he claimed was the most likely outcome of Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine.

“F— off is my very diplomatic reply to you,” Ukraine’s outgoing ambassador to Germany, Andrij Melnyk, wrote in response to Musk’s tweet. “The only outcome is that now no Ukrainian will EVER buy your f…ing tesla crap. So good luck to you.”

Musk posted a Twitter poll gauging support for what he claimed was a likely outcome of the seven-month conflict: that Crimea be permanently given to Russia; that the four regions of eastern Ukraine where Russia held sham referendums last month be put to new U.N.-organized referendums; or that Ukraine should be forced to remain “neutral,” accomplishing the long-term Kremlin goal of barring Ukraine from joining the NATO defensive alliance.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy responded with a Twitter poll of his own.

“Which Elon Musk do you like more?” Zelenskyy asked, giving two options for an answer: “One who supports Ukraine” or “One who supports Russia.”

Tesla shares were down 4.81% at $252.50 in premarket trading.

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