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US stock futures lower as markets mull the Trump CEO fallout drama

BY THE NUMBERS

U.S. stock futures were lower this morning as Wall Street was digesting the fallout from the Trump CEO panels dissolving. The Dow on Thursday logged its fourth positive session in a row. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq were riding gains in three of the past four sessions. (CNBC)

* Jobless claims and Philly Fed index at 8:30 a.m. ET
* Industrial production and capacity utilization at 9:15 a.m. ET
* Dallas and Minneapolis presidents speak this afternoon
* Gap and Ross Stores report earnings after the bell

Dow component Wal-Mart (WMT) was under some pressure in the premarket after reporting quarterly same-store sales in line with estimates. The retail giant beat expectations on quarterly earnings and revenue. (CNBC)

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba (BABA) was soaring in premarket trading after reporting quarterly earnings and revenue that beat estimates. (CNBC)

Cisco Systems (CSCO), another Dow stock, was sharply lower in premarket trading after sales in a key security business declined. Revenue, however, beat estimates while quarterly earnings matched forecasts. (CNBC)

IN THE NEWS TODAY

President Donald Trump lashed out on Twitter at Sen. Lindsey Graham this morning, claiming the Republican from South Carolina falsely stated his words about violence in Charlottesville, Virginia. (CNBC)

* McConnell's secret fury highlights GOP's Trump dilemma (USA Today)

After CEOs distanced themselves from Trump and stepped down from two advisory councils, the president said he ended the forums. The exodus was in response to Trump blaming "both sides" for Charlottesville. (CNBC)

* Inside the dramatic decision by corporate giants to rebuke Trump (CNBC)
* Apple CEO 'disagrees' with Trump's take on the violence (Recode)
* Facebook CEO: It should be obvious that neo-Nazis are wrong (CNBC)
* Trump's crisis spurs talk of White House departures (CNBC)

More protests against racism are expected today in wake of the deadly attack in Charlottesville. Hundreds of people gathered at the University of Virginia for a peaceful candlelight vigil last night. (USA Today)

While others decried Trump's remarks as a stain on the presidency, chief strategist Bannon sees Tuesday's news conference as a "defining moment" in which Trump rejected the "globalists" and defended "his people." (Axios)

Bannon also said the U.S. is already at an "economic war with China," arguing that Washington is losing the fight. But he said the U.S. is about to hit China hard over unfair trade practices. (Prospect.org)

The U.S. and South Korea plan to go ahead with next week's joint military drills despite pressure from North Korea and China. The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff said the drills are not part of negotiations. (Reuters)

* South Korea open to sending special envoy to North Korea (USA Today)

A number of HBO social media accounts were hacked last night, adding to the pile of security issues the company has had following leaks of scripts around key shows like "Game of Thrones." (CNBC)

Amazon's (AMZN) $16 billion bond issuance attracted orders equivalent to the gross domestic product of the country Belarus. The money from Tuesday's bond issue will be used to help the e-commerce giant fund its acquisition of Whole Foods. (CNBC)

STOCKS TO WATCH

Victoria's Secret-parent L Brands (LB) cut forecasts for the current quarter and the full-year. Victoria's Secret is also exiting its swim and apparel categories. L Brands did beat expectations on earnings and revenue in the just completed quarter.

NetApp (NTAP) warned on its outlook. However, the data storage company reported adjusted quarterly profit of 62 cents per share, 7 cents above estimates. Revenue was roughly in line.

Novo Nordisk (NVO) said its diabetes drug semaglutide met its primary goal of reducing glucose levels in a late-stage trial. The drug was tested against a competing treatment made by Eli Lilly (LLY).

United Rentals (URI) struck a deal to buy construction equipment rental company Neff (NEFF) for $1.3 billion or $25 per share. The price was about 1.8 percent above Neff's Wednesday close.

Berkshire Hathaway (BRKB) said it won't increase its $9 billion bid to buy 80 percent of utility company Oncor Electric. Elliott Management, which is the biggest creditor of Oncor's parent, has proposed a $9.3 billion price.

Overstock (OSTK) is in advanced talks with XPO Logistics (XPO) to set up a two-day delivery system, according to the New York Post. Such a deal would give Overstock an advantage over rival Wayfair (W).

WATERCOOLER

Alphabet (GOOGL) has acquired AIMatter, a start-up with Android and iOS apps that transform selfies using artificial intelligence. The mobile apps will remain available. (CNBC)

Motorola has been granted a patent for a smartphone display that heals itself when cracked. It's described as a screen made from a "shape memory polymer." (CNBC)