The Dow Rockets Higher as Beijing Moves to Speed Up Growth. China-Related Stocks Are Rising

The new year (and new decade) has arrived, and it is starting off with a bang. China’s central bankers gave U.S. investors a gift to start 2020: more economic stimulus in the Middle Kingdom.

U.S. stock futures are higher as a result.

The People’s Bank of China—the country’s equivalent of the Federal Reserve—lowered reserve requirements. That means banks can lend more, stimulating the economy.

China’s Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.2% in Thursday trading. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index was up 1.3%.

More growth in China, of course, is good for everyone. Europe’s FTSE 100 Index was up 0.9%. In the U.S., Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 futures were 0.5% higher. Nasdaq Composite futures gained 0.6%.

Several China-related stocks are moving in premarket trading. Shares of chip makers Advanced Micro Devices (ticker: AMD) and Intel (INTC) were up 1.9% and 0.7%, respectively. FedEx (FDX) stock—which does better when global trade is humming—was up 1.7%. Shares of 3M (MMM) rose by 0.6%. The industrial conglomerate generates a larger- than-average portion of sales in Asia.

It isn’t all good news for investors. Several stocks were lower, mostly on Wall Street rating changes.

Ford Motor (F) shares fell 0.2% in premarket trading. Evercore ISI analyst Chris McNally downgraded the stock from the equivalent of Hold to Sell.

Employment website Upwork (UPWK) shares fell 2%. Citigroup analyst Hao Yan downgraded the stock from the equivalent of Buy to Hold and slashed his price target from $23 to $12.

Stock in health-care giant Abbott Laboratories (ABT) is also down after an analyst downgrade, by about 0.6%. Guggenheim analyst Christopher Pasquale downgraded shares from the equivalent of Buy to Hold Thursday morning.

Write to Al Root at

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