Palantir Stock Drops, FedEx Falls, and the Stock Market Is Looking for a Reason to Move

Stocks were up a touch Friday as Moderna’s (MRNA) Covd-19 vaccine looks set to be authorized soon.

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 15 points, or 0.05%. S&P 500 futures were up 0.1% and the Nasdaq Composite was indicated to open up 0.1%.

An advisory panel of medical experts working with the Food and Drug Administration said Moderna’s vaccine should be used. The vaccine is expected to be granted an emergency-use exemption within the next few days. The stock fell 1% as expectations for its vaccine are largely priced in. The stock is up about 60% since November 13, the day before it announced its vaccine was highly effective.

Investors, since mid-November, have been expecting billions of doses of vaccines to be distributed within the next year helping to boost the stock market. The S&P 500 is up more than 6% since November 6, the day before Pfizer (PFE) announced its vaccine had proven effective.

Investors are also eyeing the finalization of a $908 billion fiscal stimulus deal, which would create a bridge for the economy over to when vaccines are available.

Here were some notable stock movers Friday:

FedEx (FDX) shares were down 3% after the company beat revenue and earnings estimates. Revenue was $20.6 billion, beating estimates of $19.4 billion. Earnings per share were $484 against expectations of $4.01.

Nike (NKE) shares were up 0.8% in anticipation of its earnings report after the closing bell Friday.

Darden Restaurants (DRI) fell 2% after the company reported a mixed quarter and said it expects revenue to fall more than 30% in the current quarter due to renewed lockdowns. Darden reported a profit of 73 cents a share, beating estimates of 71 cents a share, on revenue of $1.66 billion, topping forecasts for $1.69 billion.

Shares of Rocket Companies (RKT) fell 2.5% after the stock was downgraded at Keefe Bruyette to Underperform from Market Perform.

Palantir Technologies (PLTR) fell almost 4% after Credit Suisse downgraded the stock to Underperform from Neutral and lowered its price target to $13 from $17.

Write to Jacob Sonenshine at