Apple (AAPL) reported its fiscal second quarter results after yesterday's close. Apple topped consensus estimates, guided fiscal third quarter revenue above some nervous expectations, and announced that it will increase its dividend by 16% and add $100 billion to its share buyback program. Apple is up 3.9% in pre-market trading.
That "See Spot Run" summary is admittedly simple for a company with an $858 billion market capitalization -- the largest in the S&P 500 -- and it runs counter to the somewhat complex indication that the S&P futures are down four points.
We say it's complex, because we imagine market observers might have been thinking that a better than expected outlook from Apple would have ignited a broad market rally.
That hasn't been the case -- at least not at this juncture. The S&P futures are down four points, the Dow Jones Industrial Average futures are down 50 points, and the Nasdaq 100 futures are up just four points.
What's more is that there are a number of other companies that posted better than expected earnings results since yesterday's close. Mastercard (MA), CVS Health (CVS), T-Mobile (TMUS), Mondelez International (MDLZ), Exelon (EXC), Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH) and Clorox (CLX) are among the other companies that deserve an honorable mention.
The market, however, has continued with its stick-in-the-mud ways and has not exhibited any real excitement for the good earnings news.
Similarly, there was little response to the solid ADP Employment Change Report for April, which showed an estimated 204,000 positions were added to private-sector payrolls (Briefing.com consensus 225,000). The gains were broad-based by company size, too, and they weren't driven entirely by the service-providing sector either.
The goods-producing sector added 44,000 positions. Meanwhile, there was a strong contribution to the service-providing sector gain from the higher-paying professional and business industry (58,000).
That's a presumably good setup for Friday's employment report, which may be why the market hasn't shown unconditional love for the ADP number. The thought being that a strong employment report will engender concerns about the Federal Reserve taking a more aggressive interest rate path.
On a related note, the FOMC is meeting today and will issue a policy statement at 2:00 p.m. ET. The target range for the fed funds rate is expected to remain unchanged, yet market participants are waiting to see if the updated directive opens the door to the possibility of a fourth rate hike this year.
The fed funds futures market is pricing in a high probability of three rate hikes, yet the probability of a fourth rate hike in December is close to a toss up at 48.8%.
The impending publication of a new policy directive might be keeping investors sidelined, yet there is enough in the headline hopper to pull out an excuse for the lack of conviction in the wake of good earnings results.
There are issues pertaining to trade friction; there are worries about the rising debt; there are misgivings about the pace of global economic growth; there are concerns about rising interest rates; and there is angst about Special Counsel Mueller's investigation of Russia's interference in the 2016 election.
These factors can all be trotted out individually -- or collectively -- to help explain the disposition of the futures market when it looks dyspeptic after a round of good earnings news.
It is what it is, yet the simple summation at this juncture is that the stock market looks poised to start the session on an uninspired note.