Stocks race to new highs; MoneyGram takeover blocked; Fed minutes

1. Starting on a high: Wall Street celebrated the new year on Tuesday by pushing stock indexes to ne...

Posted: Jan 3, 2018 2:00 PM
Updated: Jan 3, 2018 2:00 PM

1. Starting on a high: Wall Street celebrated the new year on Tuesday by pushing stock indexes to new all-time highs.

U.S. stock futures continue to strengthen, indicating the S&P 500 and Nasdaq could hit new records today. The Dow Jones industrial average continues inching closer towards 25,000 points.

European markets are also mostly positive in early trading, and Asian markets ended the day with gains.

Twitter is exploding with concern about President Trump's tweet taunting North Korea about his "bigger & more powerful" nuclear button, but investors appear to be paying little attention.

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2. Pharmacies report earnings: Rite Aid is set to report earnings after trading closes on Wednesday, and Walgreens Boots Alliance reports on Thursday.

This is an important time for the pharmacy sector as CVS pursues an acquisition of Aetna. The deal could transform drug stores into health clinics and lower prices for consumers.

Pharmacies may also have to contend with competition from Amazon. Rumors of the company's entry into the prescription drug distribution business have been swirling.

3. Fed minutes: The Federal Reserve's monetary policy committee is releasing the minutes of its December meeting.

Investors will parse the text to get a sense of whether to expect extra interest rate hikes in 2018.

"It will be interesting to see the [Fed's] views on the fiscal impacts of Trump's tax reform and how this affected the prospects for interest rate hikes in the future," said Daniel Bergvall, an economist at the Swedish bank SEB.

4. Let's call the whole thing off: MoneyGram is calling off its merger with a Chinese financial services giant after failing to get approval from the U.S. government.

"The geopolitical environment has changed considerably since we first announced the proposed transaction with Ant Financial nearly a year ago," MoneyGram CEO Alex Holmes said in a statement Tuesday.

The deal between Ant Financial, an affiliate of Jack Ma's tech company Alibaba, and the American money transfer service was first announced in January 2017. Ant Financial originally agreed to pay $880 million, but upped its offer to $1.2 billion in April.

The agreement had been under review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which vets deals that could give a foreign investor control of a U.S. business.

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5. Coming this week:

Wednesday -- Rite Aid earnings, Automakers report December sales numbers
Thursday -- Walgreens and Monsanto earnings
Friday -- U.S. December jobs report

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

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Confirmed Cases: 118322

Reported Deaths: 3591
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion21502767
Lake10688323
Elkhart6707111
St. Joseph6619113
Allen6330205
Hamilton4938109
Vanderburgh378131
Hendricks2766124
Monroe265536
Tippecanoe256613
Johnson2352124
Clark225957
Porter219947
Delaware200162
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Madison170375
LaPorte149141
Floyd139664
Warrick138242
Howard132663
Kosciusko125917
Bartholomew118457
Marshall101524
Dubois99919
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Noble93132
Henry81226
Jackson7739
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Dearborn67528
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Clinton62314
Harrison59224
Putnam58411
Gibson5355
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Lawrence51629
Montgomery51121
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Whitley2826
Carroll27813
Adams2763
Wabash2728
Starke2717
Washington2701
Wells2674
Spencer2633
Jefferson2503
Huntington2473
Fulton2442
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Perry22113
Jay1920
Newton17411
Owen1711
Martin1680
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Rush1574
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Blackford1213
Pulaski1141
Crawford1100
Parke1072
Brown1043
Benton870
Ohio797
Union790
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Warren411
Unassigned0226

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 151802

Reported Deaths: 4746
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Franklin27119607
Cuyahoga17554656
Hamilton13237315
Montgomery7938164
Lucas7343364
Butler6085111
Summit5366252
Warren311549
Marion311147
Mahoning3095281
Stark2913175
Pickaway267944
Lorain233386
Delaware230621
Fairfield213253
Licking194963
Columbiana194080
Wood192172
Trumbull1916132
Clark183940
Clermont174423
Lake164851
Greene149034
Medina147539
Miami146351
Allen146269
Portage116866
Mercer113218
Erie95947
Tuscarawas94120
Wayne94068
Richland92219
Ross89624
Madison84312
Darke80643
Geauga72649
Athens7242
Belmont72427
Hancock72010
Lawrence67122
Ashtabula66048
Shelby66010
Putnam61923
Auglaize6119
Sandusky58020
Huron5557
Union5512
Scioto5167
Seneca48814
Ottawa47130
Preble44515
Muskingum4383
Holmes3959
Jefferson3384
Henry33414
Defiance33012
Champaign3133
Logan3133
Clinton30213
Perry3009
Brown2922
Knox28815
Washington26223
Jackson2616
Morrow2612
Fulton2591
Hardin25713
Crawford2476
Ashland2464
Coshocton23411
Fayette2336
Highland2303
Williams2143
Wyandot21312
Pike2020
Gallia19613
Meigs17610
Guernsey1738
Hocking1679
Carroll1527
Adams1364
Van Wert1243
Monroe11018
Paulding1100
Harrison643
Morgan500
Vinton473
Noble340
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