Dow Jones Futures Erase Losses On China Trade Hopes; 5 Notable Stock Market Movers

Dow Jones futures turned slightly higher Friday, along with S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq futures, on optimism over China trade talks in Beijing. . Arista Networks (ANET) and Nvidia earnings late Thursday boosted Arista Networks stock and Nvidia stock Friday, with Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) and some other chip plays rising in sympathy with Nvidia (NVDA). Apple stock fell modestly after Warren Buffett disclosed that Berkshire Hathaway (BRKB) trimmed its big Apple (AAPL) holding in the fourth quarter. Meanwhile IBD 50 software maker SS&C Technologies’ (SSNC) earnings growth accelerated yet again, with SS&C stock nearing a buy point. Top stocks are leading in the current stock market rally.

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Dow Jones Futures Today

Dow Jones futures rose 0.1% vs. fair value after falling 0.4% or so overnight. S&P 500 futures were up a fractiom. Nasdaq 100 futures edged higher. Apple stock is a big weight in the Dow Jones, S&P 500 index and Nasdaq composite.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin touted “productive meetings” with China Vice Premier Liu He in a tweet. Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Rep. Robert Lightheizer also met with China President Xi Jinping. But there remain big differences on key structural issues.

Current Stock Market Rally

In Thursday’s stock market, the 200-day line acted as support and resistance. The S&P 500 index fell 0.3%, but closed just above its 200-day average. The Nasdaq rose 0.1%, but was turned back yet again at its 200-day. The Dow Jones sank 0.4%. But while the major averages spun their wheels, top stocks outperformed yet again in the current stock market rally. The Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) rose 1.3% Thursday to its best level in nearly four months.

Nvidia Earnings

Nvidia earnings fell 53% vs. a year earlier to 80 cents a share, but analysts had expected Nvidia earnings of just 63 cents. The graphics-chip maker was light on sales and Q1 sales guidance, but its full-year sales outlook was better than feared.

Nvidia stock rallied 5.7% in premarket trading. Shares rose 1.1% to 154.53 in Thursday’s stock market. But Nvidia stock is still a long, long way from its Oct. 2 peak of 292.76.

Nvidia rival AMD’s stock rose 1.6% early, with several other chipmakers showing some modest gains.

Apple Stock

Apple stock fell 0.6% before the open after Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway cut its Apple stake in Q4, as shares plunged. Berkshire sold nearly 3 million shares of the iPhone maker. Apple stock now accounts for 21.5% of its portfolio, down from 25.79% the prior quarter.

Berkshire also sold shares of United Airlines (UAL) and Southwest Airlines (LUV), while adding to stakes of JPMorgan (JPM) and some other banks.

Arista Networks Earnings

Arista Networks’ earnings rose 32% to $2.25 a share in Q4. Revenue climbed 27% to $595.7 million. Wall Street expected Arista Networks earnings of $2.07 a share on sales of $591.4 million. The cloud networking software maker also guided slightly higher on Q1 revenue.

Arista Networks stock popped 5.6% in late trading. That signals a move above the 200-day line, but still well below the late August peak of 313.37. Its stock rose 1.85% to 240.78 on Thursday, as larger rival Cisco Systems (CSCO) rallied on its solid earnings.

SS&C Earnings

SS&C earnings rose 76% to 95 cents a share, beating views by a dime. Revenue swelled 157% to $1.13 billion. SS&C earnings growth has accelerated for four straight quarters while top-line growth has picked up for the past three quarters. The financial software maker’s growth has been fueled in large part by acquisitions that expand the company’s size and scope.

SS&C stock is on the IBD 50 list and boasts a best-possible IBD Composite Rating of 99.

SS&C stock rose 8% to 60.80 late. Shares are just below a 61.07 buy point from a six-month cup base.

Remember that SS&C stock, Nvidia stock, Apple stock, Dow Jones futures and other overnight action don’t necessarily translate in actual trading in the next regular stock market session. While overnight action is interesting, ultimately investors should follow the current stock market rally by the action of the key indexes and leading stocks in daylight hours.

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