Stock futures weak as Trump-Kim summit ends abruptly; GDP data in focus

February 28, 2019

By Shreyashi Sanyal

(Reuters) – U.S. stock index futures edged lower on Thursday after a U.S.-North Korea summit ended abruptly in Vietnam and ahead of a fourth-quarter report on U.S. gross domestic product.

The Commerce Department’s GDP data is expected to show that growth in the U.S. economy likely missed the Trump administration’s 3 percent annual target. [nL1N20L1Y5]

The report to be published at 8:30 a.m. ET (1330 GMT) will offer the latest assessment of the impact of President Donald Trump’s economic policies, including deregulation, tax cuts, increased government spending and tariffs aimed at securing more favorable trade deals.

Earlier in the day, data showed factory activity in China, shrank to a three-year low in February, underscoring deepening cracks in the world’s second-largest economy. [nL3N20M1YJ]

Also on Thursday, Trump said he had walked away from a nuclear deal at his summit with Kim Jong Un because of unacceptable demands from the North Korean leader to lift punishing U.S.-led sanctions. [nL5N20M8N0]

At 7:08 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis <1YMc1> were down 52 points, or 0.2 percent. S&P 500 e-minis <ESc1> were down 8 points, or 0.29 percent and Nasdaq 100 e-minis <NQc1> were down 30.5 points, or 0.43 percent.

The benchmark S&P 500 index <.SPX> closed slightly lower on Wednesday after testimonies to U.S. Congress from trade and central bank officials as well as President Donald Trump’s former lawyer brought few major surprises.

Still, optimism on trade and Fed policy had boosted equities from December lows in recent weeks, with the S&P 500 index roughly 5 percent below its record closing high hit in late September.

Among stocks, HP Inc <HPQ.N> tumbled 13.8 percent in premarket trading after its quarterly revenue fell short of analysts’ estimates on weaker-than-expected sales in both its personal computer and printing businesses. [nL3N20N16E]

Bristol-Myers Squibb Co <BMY.N> rose 2.5 percent after top shareholder Wellington Management came out against the drugmaker’s $74 billion deal to buy biotech Celgene Corp <CELG.O>. Celgene shares fell 7.8 percent. [nL3N20M6GN]

China’s JD.com Inc <JD.O> jumped 9.7 percent after the e-commerce firm reported quarterly revenue above analysts’ estimates on the back of stronger online retail sales. [nL3N20N4U0]

(Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal and Medha Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva)

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