Good afternoon, investors! Welcome to the weekend. On the last day of the work week, Fed Chairman Jerome Powell made some promising updates on the future of the Fed’s economic tapering. Additionally, another electric vehicle (EV) company filed for an initial public offering (IPO), ever broadening the competition for EV dominance. So, what else did the stock market do today?
- The S&P 500 closed up 0.88%
- The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 0.69%
- The Nasdaq Composite closed up 1.23%
So what else did the stock market do today? Here are some of the top stories.
What Did the Stock Market Do Today? Jerome Powell Discussed Tapering.
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell showed up (virtually) to the Jackson Hole symposium this morning, and he gave investors the speech they hoped to tune in for. Powell delivered some important info about the central bank’s plan for its pandemic spending.
In July, the Fed met and talked about how and when to begin tapering down on its pandemic spending. The central bank has been buying billions in treasury notes and bonds in an effort to keep the economy stimulated. In effect, the stock market has been ripe for risk-taking investments. However, the economy is returning back to more normal levels since the onset of the pandemic; the time is looming for the Fed to cut back on this spending. Powell is saying that time could be soon.
In his speech this morning at the symposium, the chairman signaled that we can expect the institution to pare its spending before the end of the year. Of course, the delta variant makes this statement unanticipated; the rapid spread of the variant since the last Fed meeting is leading to a slowdown in the economic recovery effort. The consumer price index grew only 0.3% in the month of July, missing estimates, and the delta variant rapidly spread through the country at the same time. These facts both indicate that another downtown for the broader economy is a real possibility still.
In addition to giving investors insight into the tapering timeline, Powell also doubled down on his inflation ideology. He says the inflation is temporary and will iron itself out through the recovery effort, especially as supply chain issues are solved. This all comes at a crucial time for Powell’s own career; his re-nomination by President Joe Biden is looming. The speech will prove to be an important moment in the president’s decision.
The Electric Vehicle Battle Wages On
The battle for EV domination is one of the fiercest in the auto industry right now. With plenty of upstarts stealing the increasingly lucrative market share for well over a decade, larger players like Ford (NYSE:F) are jumping in to try and take their slice of the pie. One the other side of the coin, new players are building themselves from the ground up a la Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) and Lucid (NASDAQ:LCID) to try and earn breakout stardom.
Rivian is an electric truck brand that is not necessarily new. Founded in 2009, it already has its finger on the pulse of the burgeoning industry. But now, it is presenting itself as a real threat in the space, especially now that it is planning on a 2021 IPO. The company says it hopes to go public around Thanksgiving.
The company has seen financial support from T. Rowe Price, Fidelity and, most notably, Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN). In fact, Jeff Bezos flexed his Rivian truck after his space-exploration company Blue Origin launched him into space, driving it across the desert landscape after landing.
Thanks to these lucrative investments, Rivian is going to rocket ahead of its competitors in terms of market capitalization. The company is reportedly looking for an $80 billion valuation upon its public offering; this would put it ahead of competitors like Fisker (NYSE:FSR), Nio (NYSE:NIO), Lordstown Motors (NASDAQ:RIDE) and Workhorse (NASDAQ:WKHS).
The company is planning on launching production next month, and if the timeline lines up, it will be in a very good place. Rivian will be able to get its truck to market ahead of some very highly anticipated competitors, including Tesla’s Cybertruck, Ford’s F-150 Lightning and GM’s (NYSE:GM) electric Hummer.
What Else We’re Watching
- Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) is back in the saddle once again as consumers start binging shows once again. New seasons of Outer Banks and All American are seeing over one billion minutes streamed per Nielsen’s newest rating report.
- A study out of Oxford University finds that the risk of blood clots is much higher in people who have contracted Covid than it is in those who have received the vaccine.
- A new short squeeze play, Support.com (NASDAQ:SPRT) traded 34% higher at close after the stock saw 16x its average trading volume in a single day.
On the date of publication, Brenden Rearick did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer, subject to the InvestorPlace.com Publishing Guidelines.