Morning Brief

Wall Street is set for big opening gains after late Monday fade saw Dow finish up 46 points

Key Points


U.S. stock futures were sharply higher this morning after sizable midday gains faded late in the Monday session, with the Dow finishing up by just 46 points. The Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq are aiming for what would be their fifth gain in six sessions. However, the Dow and S&P were still nearly in 10 percent correction territory from Jan. 26 record highs. (CNBC)

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* Cramer lists 15 sectors unaffected by Trump's tariffs on China (CNBC)

Investors get a look at inflation figures at 8:30 a.m. ET, when the government releases the March producer price index. At 10 a.m. ET, Wall Street gets wholesale inventories. There are no major companies reporting earnings today. (CNBC)

The NFIB's small business optimism index logged its 16th consecutive month of historically high levels, though the March reading was down slightly from the prior month. Taxes received the fewest number of votes since 1982 as the number one problem for business owners.

Facebook (FB) stock was about 1 percent higher premarket this morning as CEO Mark Zuckerberg begins two days of Capitol Hill testimony over the social network's privacy practices. Congress released Zuckerberg's prepared testimony ahead of his hearing. (CNBC)

* Sen. Kennedy: I hope Zuckerberg doesn't 'pull things out of his orifices' when testifying (CNBC)

Verifone (PAY) agreed to be acquired by a group led by private equity firm Francisco Partners for $2.58 billion in cash. The price for the payments technology company works out to $23.04 per share, a 54 percent premium over Monday's close. And the stock reflected that in the premarket. (CNBC)


Chinese President Xi Jinping discussed plans to further open up the Chinese economy, including "significantly" lowering import tariffs for autos and decreasing duties on other products, during an address at a forum today.

Additionally, China filed a
World Trade Organization complaint challenging President Donald Trump's tariff hike on imported steel and aluminum, saying it violates international trade rules. China has requested 60 days of consultations with the U.S. (AP & CNBC)

* Larry Kudlow bashes China for 'decades of misdeeds' on trade (CNBC)
* Alibaba's Jack Ma urges Trump and Xi to back away from trade war (CNBC)

The FBI reportedly raided the NYC office and residence of Trump's personal attorney Michael Cohen. They were apparently seeking evidence related to the payment Cohen made to porn star Stormy Daniels on the eve of the 2016 presidential election.

In response to the report, Trump ripped into special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, calling it a" disgraceful situation, it's a total witch hunt." The FBI searched Cohen's office after receiving a referral from the special counsel. (Washington Post & CNBC)

* Manafort moves to suppress evidence seized from his home (Politico)
* Mueller investigating $150,000 a Ukrainian billionaire gave Trump's foundation (NY Times)

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office forecast that the new tax law will generate an average of 0.7 percent growth over the decade and create 1.1 million jobs. However, the federal debt is primed to explode to $1.6 trillion, they said. (CNBC)

* Yellen and other economists say tax cuts are blowing up the budget (Washington Post)

Members of the National Guard have started arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border. Three GOP governors committed 1,600 Guard members to the border, giving Trump many of the troops he requested to fight what he's called a crisis of migrant crossings. (AP)

Multiple fatalities were confirmed after a small airplane crashed last night on the TPC Scottsdale Champions Course in Arizona, Phoenix. The FAA said initial information from the scene indicated five people were on board. (USA Today)

FIFA received a mysterious $25 billion bid from the Middle East and Asia for control over two tournaments, The New York Times reported. That comes as FIFA's attempts to raise revenues for the global soccer body ahead FIFA President Gianni Infantino's possible reelection.

Deutsche Bank's Chairman Paul Achleitner said outgoing CEO John Cryan was taking too long to revamp and revive the German lender. Cryan was replaced with Christian Sewing, the senior German head of its retail bank. (CNBC)

Toy maker Mattel announced that it is closing its New York office, affecting roughly 100 employees. The move, which will take place in phases throughout the rest of the year, is part of a previously announced $650 million cost savings plan. (CNBC)

France is entitled to bring criminal proceedings against local managers of Uber for running an illegal taxi service, an EU court ruled. The case concerned the ride-hailing app's use of unlicensed drivers as part of its UberPOP service in France. (Reuters)


Nike (NKE) announced the acquisition of Tel Aviv-based Invertex for an undisclosed amount. Invertex makes software that scans a customer's body for proper product sizing.

Tupperware (TUP) lowered current quarter earnings and revenue guidance below current Wall Street consensus. The maker of storage products and other home goods points to lower sales as well as a negative impact from the new tax law.

United Continental (UAL) reported a 6.5 percent increase in revenue passenger miles for March compared to a year earlier.

Novartis (NVS) will have a strengthened pipeline in gene therapy following its deal to acquire AveXis (AVXS), according to a new report by credit rating agency Moody's. However, Moody's also said the deal will reduce the drug maker's financial flexibility.

McDonald's (MCD) is expanding in Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Finland, announcing plans to open 200 restaurants in the region over the next 10 years. The restaurant chain projects the expansion will boost the number of customers in those countries by a third.


Apple (AAPL) announced its global facilities are now powered by 100 percent clean energy and nine more of its manufacturing partners have pledged to power their "Apple production" with clean energy. CEO Tim Cook called it a significant milestone. (CNBC)