Dow Futures Sink Amid Renewed Trade Tensions

The Trump administration could unveil metals tariffs later today

Managing Editor
May 31, 2018 at 9:20 AM
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Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) futures are trading below fair value this morning, as renewed trade concerns stall Wednesday's momentum. Specifically, reports indicate the Trump administration could announce steel and aluminum tariffs on European imports as early as today, with retaliation from the European Union (EU) expected. Elsewhere, oil prices have pulled back from yesterday's energy rally, with July-dated crude futures last seen down 1.2% at $67.37 per barrel. In economic news, consumer spending rose 0.6% in April, its largest gain in five months, while the core personal consumption expenditures (PCE) -- a key measure of inflation -- increased 0.2%. 

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

  • This retailer is one of the best stocks to own in June.
  • Record highs could be on the horizon for Lululemon stock
  • Tesla's Model 3 scored a key endorsement from Consumer Reports.
  • Plus, BOX drops on forecast; Sears revenue plummets; and one analyst pumps brakes on Micron stock.

Stock Futures Chart 531

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 917,442 call contracts traded on Wednesday, compared to 516,448 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio fell to 0.56, while the 21-day moving average slipped to 0.60.
  2. Box Inc (NYSE:BOX) stock is down 4.9% in electronic trading, after the cloud concern gave a soft second-quarter forecast. While Rosenblatt downgraded BOX to "neutral," the company's first-quarter beat may be what had no fewer than four analysts issuing price-target hikes. BOX shares raced to a record high of $28.68 on May 10, but now have pulled back to their 20-day moving average.
  3. Sears Holdings Corp (NASDAQ:SHLD) stock is down 7.2% ahead of the bell, after the department store chain reported a wider-than-expected first-quarter, a 31.2% plunge in total revenue, and a 12% drop in same-store sales. Ahead of today's trading, Sears stock had gained 20% this quarter, guided higher by its 30-day moving average since falling to a record low of $1.99 on Feb. 12.
  4. Micron Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:MU), one of the most volatile stocks during the summer months, is down 3.2% in electronic trading, after Morgan Stanley downgraded the chip name to "equal weight" from "overweight." The analyst in coverage cited Micron's fully priced valuation as cause for caution, noting it is an "environment where we can see storm clouds on the horizon." Micron stock is fresh off a 17-year high of $64.66 from yesterday, and has more than doubled in the past year.
  5. Weekly jobless claims fell more than expected. The weekly crude inventories report, Chicago purchasing managers index (PMI), pending home sales, and the Fed's balance sheet are all expected today. On the Fed front, speeches from Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic and Fed Governor Lael Brainard are also on deck.

stock market news may 31

Cooling Italy Concerns Boost Global Stocks

Stocks in Asia finished today higher amid easing Italian political concerns. China's Shanghai Composite saw a 1.9% lift, following the release of the region's better-than-expected manufacturing data. Meanwhile, Japan's Nikkei ended 0.8% higher, South Korea's Kospi picked up 0.6%, and Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index gained 1.4%.

European markets are mostly higher in afternoon trading, amid cooling concerns about Italy. However, Germany’s DAX is down 0.4% amid reports that President Donald Trump wants to block luxury German cars from the U.S. Elsewhere, automakers are lower on concerns about U.S. tariffs on EU steel and aluminum imports. At last check, London's FTSE 100 is up 0.5%, while France's CAC 40 is 0.3% higher.


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