Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) are trading in the green early Thursday thanks to the Federal Reserve. The Fed believes that it would be a good idea to keep any interest rate hikes on hold through 2020, sending a wave of cheer through the stock market.
The Dow Jones managed to snap a two-day losing streak and finished slightly in the green Wednesday. This happened despite a clutch of negative from major Dow components. Lululemon, for instance, offered a tepid fourth-quarter outlook. The company expects to clock earnings between $2.10 and $2.13 per share during the busy holiday season as compared to the market’s expectation of $2.13 per share.
Boeing was dealt with another blow in the 737 MAX scandal, with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) deciding to keep the plane grounded until next year.
Chevron was another Dow component weighing on the index yesterday as it reported an $11 billion writedown. Analysts believe that the oil major’s decision could weigh on the overall market and reduce the S&P 500’s earnings by $1.32 per share. Any potential downside in these components could send the Dow lower today in case there is no positive news from the likes of Costco, Broadcom, and Adobe on the earnings front.
Dow futures are up 37 points, or 0.13 percent, to 27,961 points at 5.31 am ET. The pre-market action suggests that the Dow could break past the 28,000-mark if it manages to sustain this momentum on the back of positive earnings reports.
S&P 500 futures are also trading up by five points, or 0.15 percent, while Nasdaq Composite futures are up 16 points, or 0.19 percent.
President Donald Trump is all set to take center stage today as he is expected to chair a high-level meeting with his trade advisors to decide the fate of the next round of tariffs to be imposed on China. It is widely expected that the U.S. will defer the Dec. 15 tariffs on $160 billion worth of Chinese goods in case no deal is reached before the deadline.
Reuters reports that Trump will be meeting Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, advisers Larry Kudlow and Peter Navarro, and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer. The advisers are expected to offer divergent views to Trump, though the President will have the final say on the next round of tariffs.
The Dow and the broader stock market could be crushed if Trump decides to go ahead with the tariffs that are expected to come into effect from Sunday. The Reuters report quotes an anonymous official stating that’s exactly what might happen:
“I’m expecting them to raise the tariffs on Sunday,” one source said. “The administration is preparing its talking points about how that’s the right thing to do. The message is that it will not be painful.”
On the other hand, negative earnings reports today could prove to be another headwind for the stock market and the Dow. In all, don’t be surprised to see the Dow head south today and fail to breach the 28,000-mark if the U.S. decides to escalate the tariff war with China.