Morning Brief

The Dow is set for a triple-digit fall at the open, following the second losing week in three

Key Points


U.S. stock futures were pointing to a triple-digit loss for the Dow this morning, and sharp losses for the S&P 500 and Nasdaq as well. That follows the second losing week in three for all three stock measures, with the Dow down 0.3 percent for the month of March. However, the S&P and Nasdaq were still solidly positive for the month. (CNBC)

* Cramer's game plan: Navigating 2018's new market challenges (CNBC)

Nasdaq futures were much weaker on a percentage basis this morning with Facebook (FB) shares sharply lower on increasing criticism and calls for new regulation. The latest uproar follows allegations that Cambridge Analytica inappropriately obtained and used Facebook user data. The political consulting firm was paid by the Trump campaign. (CNBC)

* Facebook's lack of leadership could sink the company (CNBC)

Bitcoin prices were little-changed this morning after rallying back late Sunday, capping off a wild weekend that saw the digital currency plunge through $8,000 and even near the $7,000 level. Cryptocurrencies are under pressure after tech companies are said to be considering an advertising ban. (CNBC)

After a busy week of economic numbers, the calendar is far lighter this week with no reports due out today. Investors are focusing on this week's meeting of Fed policymakers Tuesday and Wednesday, with Fed watchers all but certain the central bank will raise interest rates. (CNBC)

A light earnings calendar today sees the latest numbers from Canadian Solar (CSIQ) and Cheetah Mobile (CMCM) this morning, while Oracle (ORCL) will be out with its quarterly earnings after today's closing bell. (CNBC)

* Micron, up 50% this year, could see a huge swing on earnings (CNBC)


President Donald Trump will unveil a plan today to combat the opioid addiction crisis in the U.S. that includes seeking the death penalty for drug dealers and urges lawmakers to toughen sentencing laws for drug traffickers. (Reuters)

A White House lawyer said that President Trump is not considering or discussing firing Robert Mueller, the special counsel in charge of the Russia probe. That came in response to media speculation and related questions posed to the administration after Trump tweets. (Reuters)

* Trump's attacks on Mueller prompt senator warnings (WSJ)
* Fact-checking Trump's tweetstorm about the Mueller probe (Washington Post)
* Investors tread lightly in wake of Trump's Twitter meltdown, with US stocks pointing lower (CNBC)

Senior sources from the House and Senate tell Axios they expect to get a massive $1 trillion spending bill deal done before the government shuts down on Friday. If approved, it would end lawmakers continued infighting about the budget, at least through September.

Democrats have a 10-point lead over Republicans when it comes to voter preferences for which party should control Congress, NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll results show. The poll found Trump's own numbers inching higher, however.

Forty-five U.S. trade associations representing some of the largest companies in the country are urging President Donald Trump not to impose steel and aluminum tariffs against China. In a letter, the groups said it would be "particularly harmful" to the U.S. economy and consumers. (Reuters)

Vladimir Putin rolled to a crushing re-election victory yesterday for six more years as Russia's president. Putin, who was expected to win his fourth electoral contest, told cheering supporters in a triumphant but brief speech that "we are bound for success." (AP)

Two men have been rushed to the hospital on Sunday after a reported explosion in Austin, Texas. Authorities continue to hunt for those responsible for a series of package bombs and have called on the public for assistance with their investigation. (CNBC)


Newell Brands (NWL), in which activist investor Carl Icahn disclosed a 6.86 percent stake on Friday, said Monday morning it would appoint Icahn's four nominees to its board immediately. The company is also in a proxy battle with another activist investor, Starboard Value.

Apple (AAPL) is said to be developing its own MicroLED screens in California, according to a Bloomberg report. The screens would not appear on iPhones for at least three to five years, but the news could hurt suppliers like touchscreen technology company Synaptics (SYNA).

Alibaba (BABA) is investing an additional $2 billion in Southeast Asian e-commerce firm Lazada Group, doubling its prior investment. It has also tapped long-time Alibaba executive Lucy Peng to take over as Lazada's CEO.

Qualcomm (QCOM) former chairman Paul Jacobs won't be renominated to the chip maker's board, following news that he explored an effort to put together a potential buyout of the company his father founded. Reports say the board felt Jacobs could not be a director and work on a bid at the same time.

United Technologies (UTX) CEO Greg Hayes told CNBC's Jim Cramer on Friday's "Mad Money" that the company needs to explore the idea of breaking up and give investors an answer by the end of this year.

Micro Focus (MFGP) Chief Executive Chris Hsu has resigned, to be replaced by Chief Operating Officer Stephen Murdoch. The executive shift comes as the British software company cuts its annual revenue forecast.


Disney's (DIS) "Black Panther" took the top spot at the box office for the fifth straight weekend, now totaling $605 million domestically and $1.2 billion worldwide. The Marvel movie is on its way to surpassing the $623 domestic total of "The Avengers." (NY Times)

The NCAA tournament featured no shortage of upsets over the weekend, as No. 11 seed Syracuse stunned No. 3 Michigan State, a popular Final Four pick. USA Today lists five key takeaway from this weekends second-round action.