Morning Brief

World stocks under heavy pressure after North Korea's missile launch over Japan

Key Points


It's anything but a dull day in the markets, with North Korea's missile launch over Japan pointing U.S. stock futures to a triple-digit Dow loss at the open and drops for the other major averages, solidifying what's already been a negative August for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq. (CNBC)

European equity markets hit a six-month low on North Korea jitters. Media and insurance stocks there were the worst-performing sectors. Meanwhile, the euro rose to $1.20 against the dollar for the first time since 2015. (CNBC)

* Four ways North Korea's missile launch over Japan is hitting global markets (CNBC)

Rescue efforts were still underway as Tropical Storm Harvey continued to pummel Texas. Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner said police had rescued more than 3,000 people during the storm, including 1,000 on Monday alone, while the city's fire department said it had received more than 2,300 calls for service since midnight. (WSJ)

Today's economic reports aren't likely to override that negative impact, but there are two of note out today: the June reading on home prices from S&P/Case-Shiller, and the Conference Board's August reading on consumer confidence. (CNBC)

* Consumer confidence number could spur stocks (CNBC Trading Nation)


Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said North Korea's ballistic missile that passed over Japan early this morning was "unprecedented, serious and significant threat." The Japanese prime minister also said he would ask the United Nations to up the pressure on Pyongyang. (CNBC)

While Abe said the missile was an unprecedented, serious and grave threat to his country, South Korean President Moon Jae-in ordered a show of "overwhelming" force against Pyongyang just hours after the launch, according to South Korea media reports. (CNBC)

*North Korea just fired a missile right over Japan — but here's why the yen is rallying anyway (CNBC)

North Korea accused the United States of driving the Korean peninsula towards "an extreme level of explosion" and declared that it was justified in responding with "tough counter-measures." (Reuters)


JPMorgan told its clients the eventual insured losses from Harvey could be as much as $10 billion to $20 billion, making it one of the 10 most costly storms to hit the U.S. For comparison, Hurricane Ike in 2008 was a Category 2 storm and resulted in $13 billion of insurance losses. (CNBC)

*Oil prices dip as market grapples with hurricane damage (Reuters)

President Trump said he may visit the Gulf Coast two or three times this week, with stops in Texas and possibly Louisiana, to survey the damage caused by Harvey. Trump expressed amazement at the magnitude of the disaster but promised a swift and long-term federal government response. (USA Today)

The president last month twice rejected a Chinese proposal to cut steel overcapacity despite it being endorsed by some of his top advisers, as he urged them instead to find ways to impose tariffs on imports from China. (The Financial Times)

One of President Trump's business associates, Felix Sater, said in 2015 that a real estate agreement in Russia could aid the then-candidate in winning the White House, the Times reported. Earlier, the Washington Post reported that Trump lawyer Michael Cohen asked a Kremlin press aide for help with the "stalled" Trump Tower project in 2016. (NYT)

In an interview, HPE chief Meg Whitman said Uber has yet to deal with uncertainty over co-founder Travis Kalanick's future role at the company or come up with a new governance structure. Whitman had been in the running for the top job at Uber despite her having ruled out interest. (Financial Times)

* Uber to end post-trip tracking of riders as part of privacy push (Reuters)

Ford and Domino's are teaming up on a research trial that will see Ford cars equipped with self-driving technology to deliver pizzas to consumers, as a way of figuring out how everyday people will react to, and interact with, autonomous service vehicles in the future. (TechCrunch)

Burger King has waded into the cryptocurrency market with the launch of its own virtual coin called "WhopperCoin" in Russia. The virtual tokens would be used to reward customers for each purchase of a Whopper sandwich. (CNBC)


A study showed an experimental Merck (MRK) cholesterol drug cut heart attack and death risk by 9 percent. Merck, a Dow component, said it had not yet determined whether to seek approval in the U.S. and other markets for the drug.

AstraZeneca (AZN) will partner with Japan's Takeda to co-develop an early stage Parkinson's disease treatment and will receive up to $400 million from Takeda as part of the deal.

Finish Line (FINL) cut its profit forecast for the current fiscal year to 50 to 60 cents per share from the prior $1.21 to $1.23, saying sales and profit margins would continue to be pressured. It also adopted a shareholder rights plan that would be triggered if any party takes a 12.5 percent stake. Shares of Finish Line were losing about a quarter of their value in the premarket.

Praxair (PX) and Germany's Linde received a second request from the Federal Trade Commission for information on their planned $74 billion merger. The industrial gas makers said they were cooperating with the request and still expect the deal to close in the second half of next year.

BHP Billiton (BHP) intends to sell its nickel division at some point, according to a story in today's London Times.


Apple (AAPL) will host its big iPhone 8 event on Sept.12, according to Dow Jones. The company is expected to announce two new iterative iPhone updates, in addition to a high-end iPhone 8. Apple is also reportedly gearing up to announce a new 4K Apple TV and a new Apple Watch.

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