Apple, Facebook Weigh on Stock Futures

Traders are keeping a close eye on D.C. following the president's recent tweetstorm

Josh Selway
Mar 19, 2018 at 9:17 AM
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Coming off a week where all three major benchmarks fell at least 1%, Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) futures are trading sharply below fair value this morning. Investors continue to monitor any news out of Washington D.C. after last week's White House shake-up -- and following several tweets from President Donald Trump over the weekend aimed at special counsel Robert Mueller. The S&P 500 Index (SPX) and Nasdaq-100 (NDX) are set for big drops, too, as tech giants like Facebook (FB) and Apple (AAPL) face notable losses in pre-market trading.

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

  • The small-cap stock that's been soaring since August.
  • A round of bullish brokerage notes helped send this tech stock to a record high.
  • Why this blockchain stock sold off Friday.
  • Plus, Facebook under the microscope; Nomura dings Apple shares; and Fitbit gets a lift.

stocks today

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 1.03 million call contracts traded on Friday, compared to 654,698 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio stayed at 0.63, and the 21-day moving average remained at 0.61.
  2. Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) is all over the news this morning, due to reports an outside firm -- Cambridge Analytica -- inappropriately used the social media company's data during the 2016 U.S. presidential election. While Facebook has said it's investigating the situation, it's facing major criticism from all angles, including calls from lawmakers for tighter regulations. Facebook shares are down almost 4% before the open.  
  3. Bloomberg is reporting Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is working on creating its own screens in order to move away from the OLED-backed screens it used in the iPhone X. According to the story, the tech giant has been developing MicroLED displays, but the technology is extremely difficult to create. Elsewhere, Nomura Instinet released a note saying iPhone demand doesn't appear to be improving for 2018. AAPL stock is trading down 0.5% in electronic action.
  4. In one last piece of tech news, Fitbit Inc (NYSE:FIT) is up 3% in pre-market trading, thanks to a bull note at Craig-Hallum. The brokerage firm initiated coverage with a "buy" rating and $10 price target -- a huge premium to FIT's close of $5.26 on Friday. It's been a horrendous year for the equity, which is trading near record lows.
  5. Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic will take the mic, and Canadian Solar (CSIQ), Lennar (LEN), and Oracle (ORCL) will report earnings.

stock market news march 19

European Stocks Fall After Brexit Update

Asian markets were mixed to kick off the week. Japan's Nikkei closed down 0.9%, with investor sentiment under pressure after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe made a statement before parliament denying that he had ordered changes to land sale documents in an ongoing cronyism scandal. South Korea's Kospi fell 0.8%, led by losses of more than 3% each for automakers Kia and Hyundai. In mainland China, the Shanghai Composite added 0.3%, despite a lackluster showing from big-cap stocks. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index finished 0.04% higher.

Markets in Europe are lower at midday, after European Union leaders agreed to the terms of Britain's two-year "Brexit" transition. Tech stocks in particular are struggling, with British firm Micro Focus tanking more than 50% after a CEO departure and slashed revenue forecast. London's FTSE 100 is down 1.4% at last check. The French CAC 40 is off 0.6%, and the German DAX is currently down 0.8%.


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