Stock Futures Lower With Manafort, Fed in Focus

Consumer spending jumped by the most in eight years in September

Managing Editor
Oct 30, 2017 at 9:16 AM
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Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) futures are sluggish to start the week, as markets digest reports that former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort surrendered to feds after being indicted by special counsel Robert Mueller. Futures on the S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) are also lower, with the indexes set to pull back after Friday's tech-inspired rally to record highs. Traders are also anticipating President Trump's decision on the Fed Chair, expected later this week. Elsewhere, consumer spending jumped by the most in eight years in September.

Continue reading for more on today's market, including:

  • 2 restaurant stocks that could burn shorts.
  • The massive options bet on an extended tech rally.
  • Short sellers are swarming this retail stock.
  • Plus, Under Armour's downgrade; Lennar's big merger; and Merck's drug disappointment.


5 Things You Need to Know Today
  1. The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 1,441,991 call contracts traded on Friday, compared to 793,570 put contracts. It was the most call contracts traded since January 2016. The single-session equity put/call ratio fell to 0.55, while the 21-day moving average rose slightly to 0.65.
  2. Under Armour Inc (NYSE:UAA) stock is down 3.3% in electronic trading, after BofA-Merrill Lynch downgraded the shares to "underperform" from "neutral," and slashed its price target to $12 from $21. UAA has shed 45% in 2017, and the retail stock has received a fair share of bearish options attention lately.
  3. Lennar Corporation (NYSE:LEN) stock is down 3.2% before the bell, after agreeing to a $9.3 billion deal to acquire CalAtlantic Group (NYSE:CAA). The deal will make the entity the largest homebuilder by revenue. Lennar, which reported an earnings beat earlier in the month, has tacked on 35% year-to-date, and touched an 11-year high of $58.96 on Friday. 
  4. Dow stock Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) is down 3.9% in electronic trading, after the drug company late Friday withdrew its European application for Keytruda. MRK stock also received three downgrades and several price-target cuts from analysts. The equity touched an annual low of $57.82 on Friday.
  5. Chicago Bridge & Iron (CBI), Diamond Offshore Drilling (DO), First Data (FDC), Loews (L), Papa John's (PZZA), Rent-A-Center (RCII), Sony (SNE), and Texas Roadhouse (TXRH) will report earnings

stock news october 30

Overseas Trading

It was a mixed session for stocks in Asia. The Shanghai Composite fell 0.8%, and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng shed 0.4%, following a surprising sell-off in the Chinese bond market. Japan’s Nikkei on the other hand reversed its early deficit to close fractionally higher, though September retail sales came up shy of expectations in the country. Meanwhile, South Korea’s Kospi closed up 0.2%, thanks to strong gains from Samsung Electronics. 

Price action has also been mixed for European bourses. In the U.K., the FTSE 100 has fallen 0.3% amid a broad drop in homebuilding stocks. Traders there are also preparing for this week’s Bank of England (BoE) meeting. France’s CAC 40 is also lower, last seen down 0.02%. And in Germany, the DAX has so far managed a 0.1% gain. 


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