Morning Brief

Stocks are set to drop after Dow briefly dipped into correction territory

Key Points


U.S. stock futures were lower this morning, with the Dow set to fall sharply at the open after China responded with retaliatory measures to President Donald Trump's tariffs. The projected losses at the open could send the Dow to its lowest level since November.

Thursday's tumble sent the Dow and S&P 500 to their lowest levels since early February, putting the Dow essentially into correction territory. The Dow closed down 724 points. The Dow and S&P are both lower for 2018, and are set to post their third weekly drop in four weeks. (CNBC)

* Global markets slump as trade tensions escalate (CNBC)
* Cramer: Decline isn't about the Fed. It's about Trump, elites (CNBC)
* Stocks are having their worst week in over a month. Here are the key levels to watch (CNBC)

Facebook (FB) shares were lower premarket this morning. During an exclusive CNBC interview, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg apologized for the Cambridge Analytica data scandal, and said the fallout is likely to bring greater regulation for the company.

* Zuckerberg: Facebook probe into apps won't uncover all data abuse (WSJ)

Dropbox (DBX) is set to begin trading on the Nasdaq this morning after pricing its initial public offering above the increased expected range at $21 per share. That gives the data storage company a market valuation of about $9.2 billion. (CNBC)

Shares of Dow stock Nike (NKE) were sharply higher in the premarket after the athletic apparel and footwear reported better than expected quarterly earnings and revenue. Nike's results were boosted by strong demand in international markets. (CNBC)

Investors get two economic reports today to distract them from trade war worries, beginning at 8:30 a.m. ET with the release of February durable goods orders. And at 10 a.m. ET, the government's February new home sales are released. (CNBC)

Three Fed speeches today are also likely to garner some Wall Street attention: Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic, Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari and Dallas Fed President Rob Kaplan all have public appearances. (CNBC)


China said today it may target 128 U.S. products with an import value of only $3 billion in response to President Trump's announcement of tariffs on up to $60 billion in Chinese imports. The Chinese measures on goods would come in two stages. (CNBC)

* China urges US to 'pull back from brink' (Reuters)
* 'Don't do it': Top corporate brass tell CNBC survey that Trump's trade war is a mistake (CNBC)

The Senate passed a massive $1.3 trillion spending bill early this morning, which would significantly boost spending on the military and domestic programs. The more than 2,200-page legislation will now be sent to President Trump's desk for his signature. (CNBC)

Trump announced that John Bolton, a noted foreign policy hawk, will replace H.R. McMaster as the president's national security advisor. McMaster is the second national security advisor to leave the Trump administration in just over one year. (CNBC)

* McMaster firing upends plan to oust other top Trump officials (Politico)

President Trump said he "would like to" to be interviewed by Robert Mueller, the special counsel in charge of the Russia probe. In the past, the president has repeatedly and angrily denied any such collusion with Russians during the 2016 presidential campaign. (CNBC)

* John Dowd quits as Trump's lead lawyer in Mueller's Russia probe (CNBC)

During a CNN interview, former Playboy model Karen McDougal apologized to first lady Melania Trump for a 10-month affair she claimed she had with President Trump. McDougal said it started with Trump offering her money after the first time they had sex.

* The Stormy Daniels "60 Minutes" interview airs on Sunday (Vox)

The AARP said a federal proposal to expand short-term health plans could mean older Americans with insurance through the Affordable Care Act, more commonly known as Obamacare, will pay an average of $2,000 more in 2019 premiums. (CNBC)

More than half of major companies taking part in a CNBC survey say they need to take up the gun-control challenge. The CNBC Global CFO Council represents some of the largest public and private companies in the world, collectively managing more than $4 trillion in market cap.

* Students to March for gun control, and to upend elections (NY Times)
* Demonstrators surround Sacramento Kings' arena to protest police shooting (Washington Post)

The test operator in the Uber self-driving car that killed an Arizona woman is a felon with a history of traffic citations who wasn't watching the road before the accident happened, facts that raise new questions about Uber's testing process for autonomous technology. (WSJ)

Wynn Resorts (WYNN) said former Chief Executive Steve Wynn, who was accused of making unwanted advances on women, no longer holds a stake in the company after he agreed to sell all his remaining 8 million shares in privately negotiated transactions. (Reuters)


Pfizer (PFE) said it's continuing to evaluate options for its consumer health care unit, but has not yet made a decision on a sale, spinoff, or other transaction. GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) dropped out of the bidding, a day after Reckitt Benckiser did the same. Analysts had been projecting that the unit could fetch as much as $20 billion.

Micron Technology (MU) came in 8 cents above estimates with adjusted quarterly earnings of $2.82 per share. The chip-maker's revenue was above forecasts as well, as both demand and pricing for memory chips jumped during the quarter.

KB Home (KBH) reported adjusted quarterly profit of 40 cents per share, 12 cents above estimates, though the home builder's revenue was below forecasts. The company said it sees demand remaining steady and inventory staying tight for the foreseeable future.

Cintas (CTAS) beat estimates by 10 cents, reporting quarterly profit of $1.37 per share. Cintas, which makes uniforms and provides facility services, saw revenue beat estimates as well.


"Pacific Rim Uprising," the sequel to Guillermo del Toro's 2013 "Pacific Rim," is aiming to dethrone Disney's (DIS) "Black Panther" at the box office this weekend. The Marvel movie has maintained the top spot at the box office for five consecutive weekends. (Variety)