Welcome to 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.
Let's jump in.
1. Panic breaks the Thanksgiving mood. News of a potentially vaccine-resistant new COVID-19 variant emerged in southern Africa. Fears that Omicron was the new Delta had countries scrambling to bring in travel bans.
Markets went into a tailspin, with the S&P 500 logging its worst month since February on Friday as investors dived for cover.
But Monday is looking brighter, after the weekend brought reasons to be cheerful. Moderna says it could release a vaccine modified for Omicron within months. A doctor in South Africa has seen only "very mild" symptoms in patients.
The bottom line is not much is known about Omicron yet — whether it's more infectious or more lethal, and how effective existing vaccines are against it. It'll be weeks before we find out just how hard it will hit the global economic recovery.
But that uncertainty cuts both ways. For now, investors appear to be buying the dip, taking the lessons of the March 2020 outbreak.
2. US stocks are poised to recover from Friday's big sell-off. "We know how the COVID playbook ends — with buying the dip," said RBC's US strategist, who won't be surprised if the rout was the low point for stocks. Check out how markets are moving here.
3. Bank of America thinks stablecoins have become too large to ignore — and names four stocks that will benefit from the continued growth of the $141 billion industry. But before the mass adoption of stablecoins occurs, there must be regulatory clarity, according to Alkesh Shah and Andrew Moss. Here are the four names investors should be looking at.
4. Earnings on deck: E-commerce service provider Acro Media and financial services firm StoneX Holdings are reporting.
5. Oil is rebounding from the biggest crude sell-off since the depths of the pandemic. The calmer mood has taken hold in oil even after OPEC postponed this week's meeting to assess Omicron. See what Brent crude and WTI futures are doing and what analysts have to say.
6. Anthony Scaramucci sees an opportunity in Friday's brutal market sell-off. The founder of SkyBridge Capital said this could be an opportune time to buy stocks and crypto, especially if the Federal Reserve will not be as aggressive in tightening its monetary policy. Both markets slumped on fears of a hampered global economic recovery due to the new variant.
7. The stock market's fear gauge surged. The Cboe Volatility index, better known as simply the Vix, jumped more than 50% Friday. Fairlead Strategies' Katie Stockton believes the surge in volatility could signal an end to the low-volatility regime in 2021 that delivered more than 20% gains for the broader market. A close above this key level could signal investors are in for a rough ride in 2022.
8. Eye-popping metaverse purchases continue. A metaverse mega yacht that just sold for $650,000 is the most expensive NFT sold in The Sandbox virtual world. The sale highlights the huge sums investors are willing to pay to secure land in the metaverse before the virtual worlds go mainstream.
9. Legendary investor Meb Faber, who manages $1 billion in assets as CIO and CEO of a firm, says the market will continue to outperform. Thus far, his flagship fund is up 83% over the course of the last year and has returned 52% year-to-date. Here are his tips on how to play an overvalued market by melding two polar-opposite investing strategies.
10. This real estate investor rakes in $600,000 a year by flipping homes after moving to the US in 2015 with just $3,000 to his name. He quit his desk job after two years when he realized how lucrative "wholesaling" could be. Here is what he recommends to those who are new to the space, including how to avoid a $100,000 mistake.