Morning Brief

Fed elation and Trump's budget the major themes on Wall Street

Key Points


U.S. stock futures were higher this morning after Wall Street reacted positively Wednesday to the Fed's latest interest rate hike. There have not been any records since March 1, but the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq are getting close again. (CNBC)

Bond yields were higher this morning after dipping on the Fed hike and signals of gradual increases in the future. Gold was also higher. Meanwhile, oil saw continued strength on a drop in inventories. (CNBC)

The dollar was some under pressure as the Fed sounded less hawkish than anticipated. Meanwhile, the euro was higher after Dutch election exit polls pointed to a comfortable win by Prime Minister Mark Rutte over his far-right rival. (Reuters)

President Donald Trump is unveiling a budget blueprint today, calling for a boost in defense spending by $54 billion while 28 percent cut in State Department outlays and roughly 25 percent reduction from the EPA. (CNBC)

The White House budget proposal also aims to strip infrastructure funding from federal agencies to divert funds to an upcoming executive branch infrastructure plan, according to Budget Director Mick Mulvaney. (CNBC)

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson issued a blistering attack on two decades of bipartisan attempts to deter North Korea's nuclear program, saying the Trump administration will have a new approach. (NBC News)

Hours before it was to take effect, Trump's revised travel ban was put on hold Wednesday by a federal judge in Hawaii. The president called it a "terrible ruling" that he's prepared to fight to the Supreme Court if needed. (AP)

Trump said in an interview his administration will present more information "soon" about his allegations that President Barack Obama wiretapped his phone before the election. (NBC News)

House Republicans and the Trump administration scrambled to negotiate changes to a GOP health-care plan, zeroing in on potential compromises that could win over more GOP lawmakers. (WSJ)

GoPro shares were surging in the premarket after the action camera maker issued rosier outlook for first quarter revenue and announced 270 job cuts in an effort to return to profitability. CEO Nick Woodman joins CNBC at 11:20 a.m. ET.

Oracle (ORCL) was also up strongly in the premarket after beating estimates with quarterly earnings on increasing growth in its cloud offerings. Revenue, however, was slightly below expectations. Oracle raised its dividend by nearly 27 percent. CEO Mark Hurd joins CNBC at 11 a.m. ET.

Tesla (TSLA) shares were higher after the electric automaker announced an offering of $250 million in stock and $750 million in convertible notes. Elon Musk's Tesla plans to use the proceeds to strengthen its balance sheet. (CNBC)

Musk's SpaceX launched a communications satellite into orbit atop a Falcon 9 rocket early this morning. The liftoff had been postponed by heavy winds on Tuesday. (USA Today)

Amazon (AMZN) has been awarded two patents that outlines legs that act as landing gear to help delivery drones touch down on uneven surfaces and propellers with robotic adjustable wingtips.(CNBC)

Starboard Value exited its stake in Macy's (M). The activist investor group had owned nearly 1 percent of the retailer as of the end of 2016. Starboard had been pressuring Macy's to separate out its real estate. (Reuters)

Canada Goose (GOOS) is set to begin trading today on the Toronto Stock Exchange after pricing its IPO at 17 Canadian dollars per share. The trendy outwear maker also debuts today on the New York Stock Exchange. (Reuters)

American Media, publisher of The National Enquirer and Radar Online, has agreed to buy Us Weekly from Wenner Media. The terms were not discloused. But sources put a $100 million price tag on the deal. (NY Times)

Disney (DIS) refused to cut a brief, gay-themed scene from "Beauty and the Beast" as demanded by government censors in Malaysia, meaning the film won't open there today as scheduled. (NY Times)


Investors get a triple dose of economic numbers at 8:30 a.m. ET: weekly initial jobless claims, February housing starts, and the March Philadelphia Fed index. The monthly JOLTS report at is out 10 a.m. ET.

Discount chain Dollar General (DG) is among the few companies releasing earnings this morning, while software maker Adobe Systems (ADBE) is out with quarterly results after the bell this afternoon.


KCG Holdings (KCG) is the target of a takeover by rival trading firm Virtu Financial (VIRT), worth $18.50 to $20 per share in cash. KCG said it's evaluating the offer, which at the high-end would be a nearly 20 percent premium to Wednesday's close.

Williams-Sonoma (WSM) reported adjusted quarterly profit of $1.55 per share, 4 cents above estimates, with revenue only very slightly forecasts. The housewares retailer said the holiday season was one of its best, and also announced a 5 percent dividend increase.

Guess (GES) fell 3 cents short of estimates with adjusted quarterly profit of 41 cents per share. Revenue also missed. The apparel maker also issued weaker than expected full-year guidance, citing challenging conditions in some of its markets.

Jabil Circuit (JBL) reported quarterly profit of 48 cents per share, 2 cents below estimates, though revenue was slightly above forecasts. Jabil is an electronics manufacturer and a supplier to Apple (AAPL).


After some wild play-in games, March Madness, a.k.a. the NCAA men's basketball tournament, gets fully underway today with 16 games at four different sites across the country. (USA Today)