Thursday Morning Reads
- Morning Thoughts on Some Stocks and The Market
- AT&T (T) plans to shift more investments to HBO to compete with Netflix (NFLX). WSJ Report
- Adobe (ADBE) is in discussions to purchase Marketo. Reuters Report
- Shire (SHPG) considering sale of Takata (TKPYY) eye care unit. Bloomberg Report
- RBS (RBS) considering GBP 4 bln dividend payment. Times UK Report
- Toyota (TM) plans to share hybrid car secrets with China. Bloomberg Report
- Intel's (INTC) chip supply issues could impact DRAM prices (MU). Digitimes Report
- Wal-Mart (WMT) Jet.com unit plans to sell Nike (NKE) products. Reuters Report
- China supports plan to hold trade talks with The Trump Administration (FXI). Reuters Report
- Qualcomm initiates $16B accelerated share repurchase
- Walmart's Jet.com gets a makeover
- Florence weakens, still grave threat
- Musk warns of delivery crush affecting Tesla response times
- Dimon says he's 'smarter' than Trump, could beat him in presidential run
- IEA: 'Crucial period' for oil lies ahead
- Semi stocks slide on Goldman downgrades
- Heavyweight Tesla investor chimes in
- The Watchlist
- Week Ahead Webinar
- Today's Option Recap
- 2018 Top 5 For Back Half of 2018
- 2018 Top 5 Stocks
Open Interest Changes:
An Early look at today:
The European Central Bank, Bank of England and Turkey's central bank are set to announce policy decisions within an hour of each other today, between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. ET. The first two are likely to signal caution, reinforcing a policy lag behind the Federal Reserve, while the CBRT is expected to act vigorously to tame soaring inflation. Investors see Turkey's interest rates being hiked again, but President Erdogan called them "tools of exploitation" ahead of the decision.
The Trump administration has invited Chinese officials to restart trade negotiations, according to Larry Kudlow, as Washington prepares another $200B worth of tariffs on Chinese goods. "There's some information that we received... the top of the Chinese government wished to pursue talks," he said. Mid-level U.S. and Chinese officials held inconclusive discussions on Aug. 22 and 23.
Officials need to do more work before Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland holds further talks with the U.S. on renewing NAFTA. "We decided that in order to have another productive conversation," she told reporters. Asked whether the talks had hit a stalemate, Freeland replied: "Absolutely not."
The center of Florence, no longer classified as a major hurricane after being downgraded to a category 2, is expected to strike North Carolina's southern coast tomorrow. Warnings from the National Hurricane Center still proclaim the storm surge and rainfall pose a grave threat to life and property. On watch are insurers, power providers, hospitals, livestock and crop producers, generator manufacturers and building stocks.
Outgoing Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is forming a task force that will consider implementing a so-called "universal basic income" program in the city. Although it won't be used as a starting point, an initial pilot proposal would see the city give 1,000 residents $500 a month to help pay bills. It's not alone. Stockton, California, will begin a similar UBI project in 2019.
The U.K. government is meeting this morning for three hours to discuss the eventuality of a "no-deal" Brexit. It's already readying a second set of documents outlining further preparations in case it leaves the EU without an agreement in March 2019. Brexit chief Dominic Raab warned yesterday that the U.K. will not pay the so-called £39B divorce bill if there is no final Brexit deal.
Global oil supply was firing on all cylinders in August, reaching a record 100M barrels per day, but output may be tested in coming months amid Iranian and Venezuelan fallout. "We are entering a very crucial period for the oil market," the IEA said in its closely watched monthly report. "It remains to be seen if other producers decide to increase their production... Things are tightening up."
One for the record books? Bloomberg's Michael Patterson notes the "Great Crypto Crash of 2018" has extended its collapse from a January high to 80% - worse than the 78% plunge in Nasdaq following the bursting of its bubble in 2000. Fortunately for the global economy, the actual dollar amounts in crypto are of far smaller measure than the trillions wiped out in the tech crash.
Deutsche Bank is considering loosening the bond between retail and investment banking, Reuters reports, in a move that would perhaps make it easier to merge some or all of the group with rivals. The holding company structure, which would act as an umbrella over separate entities, would see Deutsche (NYSE:DB) following the example of U.S. peers like Citigroup (NYSE:C) and JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM).
"I think I could beat Trump, because I'm as tough as he is, I'm smarter than he is," JPMorgan's (JPM) Jamie Dimon said of a hypothetical run for president. "And by the way this wealthy New Yorker actually earned his money....It wasn't a gift from Daddy." He soon dialed back the remarks, saying he shouldn't have said them. "I'm not running for President... I get frustrated because I want all sides to come together to help solve big problems."
The EU's general court has upheld the bloc’s sanctions against Russian banks and oil and gas companies over their involvement in the Ukraine crisis. Rosneft (OTCPK:RNFTF), Gazprom (OTCQX:GZPFY), Sberbank (OTCPK:SBRCY) and other financial institutions challenged the penalties, which restrict their access to transactions involving certain sensitive goods and technologies, as well as capital markets in the EU.
Tesla roundup: The automaker's largest institutional investor, Baillie Gifford, has confirmed it talked to the SEC in August about Elon Musk's plan to take the company private and conceded that he needs some assistance in the C-Suite. Tesla's (NASDAQ:TSLA) VP of Worldwide Finance, Justin McAnear, is also the latest to depart the company, while Musk tweeted that a delivery crush is affecting Tesla response times.
Shares of Chinese electric carmaker NIO recovered sharply from a 15% fall in their market debut on Wednesday, rising 11% in afternoon trade, after the company's IPO was priced at the lower end of its expected range. The rebound was a welcome relief for NIO, whose offering came under pressure by investors who have turned wary about EV makers due to struggles at Tesla (TSLA).
Hershey is plundering Pirate's Booty in a $420M deal. The chocolate-making icon has entered a definitive deal with B&G Foods (NYSE:BGS) to acquire the snack line, including Pirate's Booty cheese puffs, Smart Puffs and Original Tings. The transaction is expected to be accretive to Hershey's (NYSE:HSY) growth targets due to a strong trajectory and solid margin structure. BGS +1% premarket.
Upping the competition against Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Jet.com is redesigning its website with more merchandise, faster delivery and a slew of other upgrades. Shoppers will see more local brands and personalized experiences that takes into account their zip code or suggests items based on past purchases. The Walmart-owned (NYSE:WMT) site is further courting urban millennial customers through grocery initiatives.
Media news: Jeff Fager, the executive producer of 60 Minutes and one of the most powerful figures in television news, is leaving CBS amid reports of inappropriate behavior. Verizon's (NYSE:VZ) head of media and advertising, Tim Armstrong (ex-CEO of AOL), will leave at the end of the year and Meredith (NYSE:MDP) will lay off some 200 workers and merge magazines as it continues to adjust its portfolio after digesting Time Inc.
The FDA has threatened to pull e-cigarettes from shelves if manufacturers do not make changes to help control teenager usage. Commissioner Scott Gottlieb: "The disturbing and accelerating trajectory of use we're seeing in youth, and the resulting path to addiction, must end. The FDA cannot tolerate a whole generation of young people becoming addicted to nicotine as a trade off for enabling adults to access these products." Related: MO, BTI, PM, TPB, VGR, OTCQB:GLLA, OTCQX:IMBBY, OTC:AHII
In Asia, Japan +1%. Hong Kong +2.5%. China +1.2%. India +0.8%.
In Europe, at midday, London -0.3%. Paris +0.2%. Frankfurt +0.5%.
Futures at 6:20, Dow +0.2%. S&P +0.3%. Nasdaq +0.6%. Crude -1.3% to $69.45. Gold -0.1% to $1210.30. Bitcoin +1.7% to $6434.
Ten-year Treasury Yield flat at 2.97%
Today's Economic Calendar
8:30 Initial Jobless Claims
8:30 Consumer Price Index
10:30 EIA Natural Gas Inventory
12:30 PM Fed's Bostic: Economic Outlook and Monetary Policy
1:00 PM Results of $15B, 30-Year Note Auction
2:00 PM Treasury Budget
4:30 PM Money Supply
4:30 PM Fed Balance Sheet