5 things you need to know before the stock market opens on Thursday, March 2

  • Salesforce scores with its earnings report.
  • Tesla’s latest ‘master plan’ flops.
  • President Biden is preparing to veto an anti-ESG measure.

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

The gloom of February passed into March. The three indices fell or flattened on Wednesday (the Nasdaq and S&P 500 fell while the Dow made the least gains), and the yield on the 10-year Treasury reached 4% for the first time since November. That action indicates that the pain will last a little longer. On Thursday, investors will review the latest weekly jobless claims as they anticipate the Federal Reserve’s next steps in its fight against inflation to raise rates. Fed Governor Christopher Waller will speak Thursday afternoon. Follow live market updates.

Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, at the WEF in Davos, Switzerland on May 25, 2022.

Adam Galica | CNBC

Salesforce surprised everyone — in a good way — with its earnings report Wednesday. Shares of the enterprise software giant and parent company Slack rose about 15% in after-hours trading after the company easily beat Wall Street’s expectations for revenue and earnings. Activist investors have pressured Salesforce and its CEO, Marc Benioff, in search of bigger profits. The company recently cut 10% of its workforce, resulting in more than $800 million in restructuring costs, as part of a long-term effort to control spending. Benioff also said the company has disbanded its M&A board committee as it works with consulting firm Bain to review Salesforce’s business.

Elon Musk speaks at Tesla Investor Day.

Courtesy: Tesla

Shares of Tesla fell more than 5% in after-hours trading after the electric-vehicle company unveiled its latest “master plan,” which, according to CNBC’s Lora Kolodny, lacked detail and detail. CEO Elon Musk spoke in utopian terms as he stepped down from the presentation. “There is a clear path to a renewable energy Earth. It doesn’t require destruction of natural habitats,” he said. “It doesn’t require us to be frugal and stop using electricity and be out in the cold or anything.” On the business front, Tesla is sticking to its goal of producing 20 million electric cars per year by 2030. However, there is still a long way to go. Last year, the company said it delivered just over 1.3 million cars.

U.S. President Joe Biden discusses health care costs and access to affordable health care at an event in Virginia Beach, Virginia, Feb. 28, 2023.

Leah Millis | Reuters

In the biggest sign yet that political winds are blowing against environmental, social and corporate governance, or ESG, guidelines, the Democrat-led Senate voted Wednesday to overturn a rule that allows pension funds to adopt such progressive standards. to consider when making investment decisions. Senator Jon Tester, a moderate Democrat from Montana, and conservative Democratic Senator Joe Manchin from West Virginia — who are up for re-election next year in their deeply Republican states — voted with the Republicans to make it a 50-46 score. However, President Joe Biden has said he will veto the measure to keep the rule in place. It would be the first veto of his presidency.

Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) (L), Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz

Reuters (L) | Getty Images (R)

Vermont Democratic Socialist Senator Bernie Sanders is serious about bringing Howard Schultz in for questioning after Starbucks’ outgoing interim CEO declined an invitation to testify before lawmakers. The progressive, pro-union senator has held a vote for next Wednesday that will decide whether to subpoena Schultz to testify before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, or HELP, of which Sanders chairs. Baristas in nearly 300 Starbucks stores have voted to unite, a move Schultz has opposed. Sanders, in turn, accused Schultz of union fraud.

– CNBC’s Samantha Subin, Jordan Novet, Lora Kolodny, Christina Wilkie and Amelia Lucas contributed to this report.

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