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US pre-open: Stocks to edge up as earnings roll in; MS and BNY Mellon report

By Michele Maatouk

Date: Wednesday 17 Apr 2019

US pre-open: Stocks to edge up as earnings roll in; MS and BNY Mellon report

(Sharecast News) - US stock futures pointed to moderate gains at the open on Wednesday as investors braced for more earnings releases, with Morgan Stanley, BNY Mellon and PepsiCo in focus.
At 1215 BST, Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 futures were up 0.1% and 0.2%, respectively, while Nasdaq futures were 0.3% firmer.

In corporate news, PepsiCo looked set to fizz higher as the food and beverage company's quarterly earnings and revenue beat analysts' expectations.

Shares in banking giant Morgan Stanley were also likely to be active after it posted first-quarter earnings per share of $1.39, down from $1.45 a year ago but ahead of expectations of around $1.17.

BNY Mellon also released its earnings ahead of the opening bell, with profit down 20% from Q1 2018 to $910m.

Netflix was also likely to be in the spotlight after its Q1 numbers after the close on Tuesday, which showed a beat on the top and bottom lines but disappointing guidance.

Neil Wilson, chief market analysts at Markets.com, said: "Two main reasons to be cautious - price hikes are be rolling out across a number of key geographies and this gives management enough reason to be conservative about net new subscriber adds. Meanwhile, we should also look at an increasingly competitive space with Disney and Apple recently announcing its own streaming platforms. Further, we should anticipate certain plateaus in the growth cycle."

Elsewhere, IBM was in red in pre-market trade after the technology company's first-quarter revenues missed expectations.

Away from earnings, Sino-US trade relations were in focus again as White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said "very good progress" was being made in talks.

"We like what we see, but I'm not here to make a forecast," he told Fox Business Network when asked about whether he could definitively say a deal would be reached between the two.

Investors in the US will also be digesting the latest batch of data out of China overnight, which showed that first-quarter GDP grew at 6.4%, beating estimates of 6.3% and matching the 6.4% seen in the fourth quarter of last year.

Meanwhile, the Lunar New Year slowdown in industrial production in February of 5.3% saw a rebound to expansion of 8.5% year-on-year, ahead of expectations of 5.9%. In addition, retail sales for March rose 8.7%, up from 8.2%.

On the US macroeconomic calendar, wholesale inventories are at 1500 BST.

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