Stock Futures Eye Lower Open on Apple Warning

Earnings and coronavirus headwinds continue to weigh on stocks

Managing Editor
Feb 18, 2020 at 9:16 AM
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U.S. stock futures are signaling a lower open, as traders digest an underwhelming earnings report out of Walmart (WMT), and news from Apple (AAPL) that coronavirus headwinds will cause its second-quarter revenue to come in lower than expected. This latter update is set to weigh on the broader technology sector, with chip stocks in particular struggling in pre-market activity. In response, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) is looking at a triple-digit decline at the open, with the Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX) and S&P 500 Index (SPX) setting up for weak opens, as well.

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

OV Futures Feb  18

5 Things You Need to Know Today

  1. The Cboe Options Exchange (CBOE) saw 1.5 million call contracts traded on Friday, to 850,778 put contracts. The single-session equity put/call ratio moved to 0.58, and the 21-day moving average was 0.41.  
  2. Banking giant HSBC Holdings Plc (NYSE:HBSC) is down 5% in electronic trading, lower after announcing it will be dropping $100 billion in assets and 35,000 job cuts. This comes as a restructuring move for its U.S. and European branches. HSBC has been struggling on the charts long term, seeing overhead pressure at the 40-week moving average.
  3. Cincinnati-based Kroger Co (NYSE:KR) is up a healthy 6.1% in early trading, surging after it was revealed Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) took a $549.1 million stake in the equity, revealed through the firm's latest Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing. KR has added 16% over the past six months, enjoying a bounce off the 100-day moving average late last month.
  4. Retailer Pier 1 Imports Inc (NYSE:PIR) is set for a difficult day on the charts, the company earlier announcing it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. This comes just after the equity said it will be closing 450 stores. The 30-day moving average has acted as overhead resistance in recent weeks, contributing to the stock's now 80% year-over-year deficit.
  5. Trading will pick back up with plenty of economic data on the docket, including the Empire state manufacturing index and the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) housing market index. A bevy of earnings reports will roll out too, with notable reports from Walmart, Advance Auto, Bloomin' Brands (BLMN) and Groupon (GRPN) on the docket.

buzz stocks feb 18

Asia, European Markets Inch Lower

Markets in Asia ended mostly lower today, with tech stocks in the region taking a hit after Apple issued a revenue warning amid weakened iPhone demand in China and a waning global supply. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng and the South Korean Kospi both dropped 1.5%, while the Nikkei in Japan wasn’t far behind with a 1.4% haircut. The Shanghai Composite in China was the only gainer, up 0.05% as reports that the country plans on accepting tariff-exemption applications on U.S. goods helped pare some earlier losses.

Apple drama and even more coronavirus concerns have taken down European stocks midday, too. The French CAC has dropped 0.5%, dampened by rail concern Alstom, which is sinking after signing a deal to acquire the rail division of Canada’s Bombardier. Meanwhile, the German DAX is 0.8% lower, and the FTSE 100 in London has lost 0.8% as investors comb over a mixed bag of economic data, and eye a massive earnings miss from banking heavyweight HSBC.


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