Morning Brief

Wall Street greets the inconsistent month of June

Key Points


U.S. futures are negative on the first trading day of June following weak Chinese PMI data. Stocks have alternated between monthly gains and losses during June since 2011, meaning they would rise if recent patterns hold. The Dow is coming off its fourth straight month of gains, the S&P 500 its third straight.

Oil futures are lower ahead of Thursday's OPEC meeting in Vienna, after the UAE oil minister said he is happy with the oil market and sees prices moving higher. (Reuters)

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced on Wednesday he will launch additional stimulus measures and delay the country's planned sales tax hike until October 2019 as the global economy faces risks. (CNBC)

The campaigns of Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have been in contact to discuss unifying the Democratic Party, Clinton said on Tuesday. (Reuters)

Decorated Iraq War veteran and National Review commentator David French was identified as the potential independent conservative presidential candidate Bill Kristol, a leader of the "Never Trump" movement, teased in a tweet on Sunday. (NBC News)

North Korea has implored Americans to vote for Donald Trump in an op-ed. Meanwhile, the embattled leftist president of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, endorsed Sen. Bernie Sanders' bid for the Democratic nomination. (CNBC/Reuters)

Former employees of Trump University alleged they were pressured to push students to take courses they couldn't afford and said marketing materials made false claims about Donald Trump's involvement in selecting staff, testimony from a lawsuit against the for-profit school unsealed on Tuesday showed. (NYT)

Shari Redstone on Tuesday said she has no interest in running Viacom (VIAB) after six of the company's independent directors said they would fight any effort to oust them amid a continued battle over Sumner Redstone's media empire. (Reuters)

Microsoft (MSFT) is selling about 1,500 patents to China electronics maker Xiaomi, in a deal that also includes a patent cross-licensing agreement. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. (Recode)

Softbank will sell about $7.9 billion in Alibaba (BABA) shares, cutting its stake in the China-based e-commerce giant to 28 percent from 32 percent. (CNBC)

Apple (AAPL) is planning to issue $1 billion in 30-year bonds in Taiwan, according to a Reuters report. (Reuters)

In a wide-ranging interview at Code Conference, Amazon (AMZN) CEO Jeff Bezos said it's hard to overstate the impact artificial intelligence will have on society. The company dedicated 1,000 people and four years to developing its AI assistant Alexa, he said. (CNBC)


It's another busy day for economic numbers, beginning with May U.S. auto sales. They'll be released throughout the morning, with Fiat Chrysler expected at about 8:30 a.m. ET, Ford (F) at 9:15 a.m. ET, General Motors (GM) at 9:30 a.m. ET, and Toyota (TM) during the 10:00 a.m. ET hour.

The Institute for Supply Management is out with its May manufacturing index at 10 a.m. ET. The index is expected to drift down to 50.3 from April's reading of 50.8.

At the same time, the government is out with April construction spending, which is seen rising 0.7 percent after March's increase of 0.3 percent.

The Federal Reserve will release its Beige Book, the region-by-region assessment of the U.S. economy, at 2 p.m. ET.

We'll also get the Mortgage Bankers Association's weekly look at mortgage applications at 7 a.m. ET, but two other reports that would usually be out today — the Energy Department's oil and gasoline inventories report and ADP's monthly look at private sector employment — are delayed until tomorrow because of the Memorial Day holiday.

Michael Kors (KORS), Cracker Barrel (CBRL), Lands' End (LE), and Vera Bradley (VRA) are among the companies releasing quarterly earnings this morning, while cloud storage provider Box (BOX) issues its numbers after today's closing bell.


Under Armour (UA) issued a sales warning directly related to the bankruptcy of sporting goods retailer Sports Authority. The sports apparel maker said it would only see about a quarter of the revenue it had originally expected from sales at Sports Authority.

Workday (WDAY) earned an adjusted 5 cents per share for its latest quarter, compared to consensus forecasts of a 2 cents per share loss. Revenue was also better than expected for the provider of human resources software, but shares are under pressure on indications of slowing growth in billings.

Staples (SPLS) Chief Executive Officer Ron Sargent will depart after the company's June 14 annual meeting. The move comes just a few weeks after Staples ended its planned deal to buy rival Office Depot (ODP) in the face of Justice Department objections. Staples North American President Shira Goodman will serve as interim CEO while a special committee searches for a permanent replacement.

Boyd Gaming (BYD) is selling its 50 percent stake in Atlantic City's Borgata casino to MGM Resorts (MGM) for about $900 million.

Las Vegas Sands (LVS), Wynn Resorts (WYNN) and other casino operators operating in Macau are on watch today, after gaming revenue dropped 9.6 percent in May. That marked the 24th consecutive month of falling revenue. Separately, Las Vegas Sands settled a lawsuit with former CEO Steve Jacobs, who had sued in 2010 for breach of contract and wrongful termination.


Police are investigating the parents of the 3-year-old boy who fell into a gorilla enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo, which prompted zookeepers to shoot and kill a male gorilla name Harambe. (Reuters)

Airbnb has launched a tool that allows people to issue complaints about neighbors who rent out their home on the house-sharing website. (Recode)