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US pre-open: Futures point to flat open ahead of more earnings reports

By Iain Gilbert

Date: Wednesday 17 Jul 2019

US pre-open: Futures point to flat open ahead of more earnings reports

(Sharecast News) - Wall Street futures had major indices opening higher on Wednesday, bouncing back from comments made by Donald Trump during the previous session that put a halt to a historic rally.
As of 1200 BST, Dow futures were up 0.16%, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100 futures had the indices opening 0.18% and 0.25% firmer, respectively.

US stocks closed lower on Tuesday following some key second-quarter bank earnings, with the Dow seeing a retreat from the get-go, starting the session 23.53 points lower after recording another all-time high on Monday on the back of comments from Federal Reserve chairman Jerome Powell during the prior week hinting at an interest rate cut at the end of July.

Powell hinted about the possibility of a rate cut again on Tuesday, but the message was accompanied by a string of risk factors, including the federal debt limit and falling US inflation, that combined triggered a short bout of profit-taking.

Trump also said on Tuesday that China and the US still had "a long way to go" before settling their trade dispute, saying as well that Washington may be looking to impose sanctions on an additional $325bn worth of Chinese goods coming into the country.

"We have a long way to go as far as tariffs where China is concerned, if we want. We have another $325bn we can put a tariff on, if we want," he said.

His comments came as the world's two largest economies were hoping to restart negotiations on a trade deal after Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed not to escalate tensions at last month's G-20 meeting.

With corporate earnings season well and truly underway, Alcoa, Bank of America, eBay, IBM and Netflix will all report earnings on Wednesday.

Ahead of the open, James Hughes at AxiTrader said: "The market is closely watching to see if overall earnings post another quarter of contraction as that would make for two successive declines and raise fresh questions as to the health of the underlying economy.

"It may be early days, but at least so far, the outlook seems broadly positive."

Amazon shares were flat in pre-market trading despite the EU announcing it was launching an investigation into the e-commerce giant over possible anti-competitive business practices.

On the data front, weekly mortgage applications were scheduled for out at 1200 BST, while housing starts figures for June were due out at 1330 BST.

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