Here are the main news for investors to begin their day of trading:
1. Short Day
Stocks are finishing a shorter trading week after Thanksgiving with a half-day on Friday. Up until Wednesday’s end, the major indexes had all increased by almost 1% for the week. On the last full trading day, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500, and the Nasdaq Composite all saw widespread gains. If the positive trend continues until the market closes on Friday at 1 p.m. ET, it will mark four weeks in a row of gains for each major average.
2. Black Friday Buzz
On this Black Friday, it’s not just about the discounts. As shoppers become more budget-conscious and holiday deals kick off earlier than usual, retailers are making extra efforts to attract customers and boost sales. They’re introducing pop-up events, quick flash sales, and attractive merchandise to persuade shoppers to make purchases.
This unofficial beginning of the holiday shopping season is happening at a time of caution for retailers. Companies like Best Buy, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Target, and Walmart have all signaled concerns about a potential slowdown in sales by the end of the year.
3. Pause for Humanity
A break in the fighting between Israel and Hamas started on Friday. This marks the first temporary peace agreement since the conflict erupted in mid-October. The truce, facilitated by Qatar, Egypt, and the U.S., is set to last for four days.
During this time, humanitarian aid can be delivered, and there will be an exchange of hostages: Hamas has agreed to release 13 people abducted on Oct. 7, and Israeli forces will allow several detained Palestinian individuals to return home.
4. Every Minute Counts
Airlines are striving to reduce the time it takes for planes to leave and arrive, a move that could potentially save them millions. Leading carriers such as American, United, and Delta are adopting new approaches like automatic gate assignments, revised boarding procedures, and digital messaging to prevent delays.
Even minor hitches can create a ripple effect in the flight schedule, leading to expensive disruptions. Some of these new methods will be put to the test this holiday season, a year after significant travel mishaps left thousands of passengers stranded.
5. $115 Million Heist
Around $115 million has been taken from two cryptocurrency platforms as hackers managed to access and steal digital funds. The platforms, HTX exchange and Heco Chain, are associated with well-known entrepreneur Justin Sun, who acknowledged the security breaches.
Approximately $30 million worth of cryptocurrencies was taken from HTX (previously known as Huobi), and a total of $85.4 million was stolen from Heco Chain, referred to as a blockchain bridge. HTX is actively working to identify the source of the attack and has taken urgent measures to safeguard user assets.
Investors face a shortened trading week after Thanksgiving, with stocks showing positive momentum. Black Friday sees retailers going beyond discounts to boost sales. A temporary truce in the Israel-Hamas conflict allows humanitarian aid and hostage exchange. Airlines aim to save millions by reducing flight times. Two cryptocurrency platforms linked to Justin Sun suffer a $115 million heist, prompting urgent security measures.