Equity advances across Asia and Europe ushered stateside equity futures modestly higher, prior to Friday’s open, amid progress in US-China trade talks, modestly higher fixed income yields and ahead of the largest initial public offering since 2014, ride-hailing giant, Lyft (LYFT).
In recent trade-talk developments, it has been reported that Chinese and US negotiators are checking the ‘fine details’ of a possible agreement, to end the nearly year-long trade war between the world’s two largest economies. Treasury Secretary, Steven Mnuchin, said that talks were “very productive” and tweeted, earlier this morning, that he looks forward to welcoming China’s Vice Premier, Liu He, to Washington next week.
Wall Street ended Thursday’s session modestly higher, fueled by the highlighted progression of these US-China resumed trade talks, paired with an eased rally in sovereign debt, as investors continued to assess implications of slowing global growth.
The S&P 500, which climbed as much as +0.50%, finished +0.38% higher, led by Material (+0.97%) and Financial +(0.86%) sectors. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq Composite also carved out similar gains for the day, positive +0.38% and +0.23%, respectively.
In today’s economic calendar: PCE, Personal Income and Personal Spending data is due for release at 8:30am EST, while New Home Sales for February are scheduled to follow at 10am EST.
In earnings; New Age Beverages (NBEV) and Carmax (KMX) are amongst the major companies scheduled to release their latest financials this morning.
TODAY’S TOP HEADLINES:
China & Trade: China, US Pore Over Details of Agreement Text to End Trade War. (Bloomberg)
Chinese and US negotiators have been working line-by-line through the text of an agreement that can be put before President Donald Trump and counterpart Xi Jinping to defuse a nearly year-long trade war, according to officials familiar with the matter.
IPO: Lyft prices IPO at $72 per share. (CNBC)
Lyft’s initial public offering of 32.5 million shares was priced at $72 per share on Thursday. This would value the company at more than $20 billion and hit the top of its expected range.
Brexit: May Risks Fresh Defeat on Day UK Meant to Leave. (Bloomberg)
Theresa May makes a desperate push to get at least the main part of her Brexit divorce deal through Parliament on Friday, the day the UK was meant to be leaving the European Union.
Today’s Economical Announcements
08:30AM – ★★☆ – Core PCE Price Index (MoM) (Jan) (Previous: 0.2%)
08:30AM – ★★☆ – PCE Deflator (MoM) (Previous: 0.1%)
08:30AM – ★☆☆ – Personal Income (MoM) (Feb) (Previous: -0.1%)
08:30AM – ★★☆ – Personal Spending (MoM) (Feb) (Previous: -0.5%)
10:00AM – ★★★ – New Home Sales (Feb) (Previous: 607K)
STOCKS IN THE SPOTLIGHT:
Pre-Market Movers & News Related Stocks
Progress Software (PRGS): [EARNINGS] Reported quarterly profit of 50 cents per share, 3 cents a share above estimates. Revenue exceeded forecasts, and the company also raised its full-year outlook.
RH (RH): [EARNINGS] Reported adjusted quarterly profit of $3 per share, beating the consensus estimate of $2.86 a share. Revenue below forecasts, however, and RH cut its full-year earnings forecast, noting negative trends in the high-end housing market.
CarMax (KMX): [EARNINGS] Reported quarterly profit of $1.13, 9 cents a share above estimates. Revenue fell below forecasts.
BlackBerry (BB): [EARNINGS] Earned an adjusted 11 cents per share for its latest quarter, beating estimates by 5 cents a share. Revenue beat forecasts, and hit a record for both the fourth quarter and the full year.
Spotify (SPOT): [RATING] Rated “underperform” in new coverage at Credit Suisse, which said that consensus long-term expectations for the music streaming service are too high despite its own forecast of strong subscriber and revenue growth.
DowDupont (DWDP): [FORECAST] Cut its sales forecast for its first quarter, with the chemical maker citing the impact of floods in the Midwest on its agriculture business as well as weakness in its packaging and specialty plastics units.
Wells Fargo (WFC): [NEWS] CEO Tim Sloan stepped down, saying the bank would benefit from a change in leadership. Sloan had been under increasing pressure as he tried to restore the bank’s reputation following the 2016 fake account scandal. Raymond James upgraded the stock to “market perform” from “underperform” following that announcement.
General Motors (GM): [NEWS] Sold a closed South Korean plant to Tesla supplier Myongshin for an undisclosed price. Myongshin will use the facility for contract manufacturing of electric vehicles. Separately, GM said it would not cut the price of its electric Chevy Bolt even though a federal tax credit is due to drop by 50 percent on Monday.
Boeing (BA): [NEWS] Boeing is facing its first lawsuit over the Ethiopian Airlines crash of a Boeing 737 MAX jet. It was filed in Chicago by the family of Jackson Musoni of Rwanda, one of the crash victims. Separately, investigators looking into crash are said to have reached a preliminary conclusion that an anti-stall system on board misfired, The Wall Street Journal reported Friday.
Comcast (CMCSA): [DOWNGRADE] RBC Capital downgraded the NBCUniversal and CNBC parent to “sector perform” from “outperform,” saying it is taking a more cautious view on cable sector fundamentals and lowering its expectations for broadband and video subscriber numbers.
GAINERS: ATNA, PVH, FIVE, WCG, XHR, SVMK
LOSERS: NLSN, TMUS, HOME, CDNA, MTSI
LYFT Inc. (LYFT) (Price: 72) (Est. Vol: $2.406B)