Thursday July 19th

19-07-2018

Dow set to fall 100 points at the open as earnings season rolls on, IBM shares jump

U.S. stock index futures pointed to a negative open on Thursday, as investors tracked further earnings results and monitored political events. At around 8 a.m. ET, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures fell 85 points, indicating a decline of 102.29 points at the open. Nasdaq 100 and S&P 500 futures also pointed to a downbeat start to their respective trading sessions. IBM shares rose more than 2.5 percent in the premarket, after the Dow component reported earnings and revenue that surpassed expectations. American Express, another Dow member, posted a profit that was just above estimates, while sales came in slightly below estimates. Shares of American Express fell more than 2 percent before the bell. Bank of NY Mellon reported quarterly results that were roughly in line with expectations. Microsoft is expected to report after the close. Stocks closed higher on Wednesday, boosted by stronger-than-expected corporate results. The season has been positive for U.S. traders, who are on track for their best year since 2011, Reuters reported. Initial jobless claims fell by 8,000 in the latest week, dropping to their lowest level since late 1969. Meanwhile, traders will also keep an eye on politics after President Donald Trump said that the U.S. may negotiate a trade deal with Mexico. Regarding trade, the White House signaled it is also expecting an offer from Europe for a free trade deal. Speaking to CNBC at a conference Wednesday, White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow said that he had been told that European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, who is to visit Washington next week, will put on the table “an important free trade offer.” Asian stocks closed mixed on Thursday, with major markets fading after initially trading higher on the back of Wall Street's earnings-led advance, while Chinese shares extended their losing streak. The Nikkei 225 slipped into negative territory after gaining during morning trade, closing lower after four straight sessions of gains. The benchmark closed lower by 0.13 percent, or 29.51 points, at 22,764.68. Over in South Korea, the Kospi edged lower by 0.34 to close at 2,282.29 despite large cap tech stocks advancing. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index closed lower by 0.38 percent at 28,010.86, the consumer and services stocks leading the declines. Mainland China indexes saw steeper losses. The Shanghai composite shed 0.51 percent to close at 2,772.98, marking a fifth straight session of declines. The Shenzhen composite finished the day down 0.79 percent. Oil prices fell on Thursday after official data showed an unexpected rise in U.S. crude stockpiles, U.S. output hit a record high and major oil exporters increased production. International crude oil benchmark Brent was down 40 cents at $72.50 a barrel by 0740 GMT. U.S. light crude was 20 cents lower at $68.56. Brent has fallen almost 9 percent from last week's high above $79 on emerging evidence of higher production from Saudi Arabia and other members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries as well as Russia and the United States. Gold extended falls to a one-year low on Thursday as the U.S. dollar firmed after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell asserted the need for further interest rate hikes amid a strong economy. Spot gold was down 0.2 percent at $1,223.56 an ounce at 0703 GMT. The yellow metal slipped to its lowest since July last year at $1,220.41 an ounce earlier in the session. U.S. gold futures for August delivery were 0.4 percent lower at $1,223.20 an ounce.