Morning Brief

Stock futures are flat ahead of April's employment report

Key Points


Futures were indecisive this morning ahead of the April employment report. The Dow wiped out a nearly 400 point deficit Thursday to end the day higher. The major averages are, however, on track for a second straight week of declines heading into today's trading. (CNBC)

Consensus forecasts for the Labor Department's April jobs report call for 195,000 new non-farm jobs for April, compared with 103,000 in March, with the unemployment rate falling to 4.0 percent from the prior 4.1 percent. (CNBC)

Apple (AAPL) stock could get a boost after Berkshire Hathaway's (BRKB) Warren Buffett told CNBC that Berkshire bought 75 million Apple shares during the first quarter, bringing its total holdings to 240.3 million shares. Berkshire will release its quarterly numbers after the bell today, ahead of its annual meeting this weekend.

* Buffett: Obsessing over iPhone X sales in the near term 'totally misses the point' on Apple's stock (CNBC)

Investors will be keeping watch on Stanford University's Annual Monetary Conference, where CNBC's Steve Liesman will be speaking with San Francisco Fed President John Williams and Dallas Fed President Rob Kaplan.


The U.S. stands ready to impose further trade tariffs on China if Beijing walks away from agreed-upon commitments, according to the Wall Street Journal. The journal said the U.S. asked China to reduce its trade surplus by $200 billion by year-end 2020.

* Cramer on trade: China could wait out Trump's presidency to make a trade deal—that's bad for stocks (CNBC)

CNBC has learned that special counsel Robert Mueller is focusing intensely on alleged interactions between former top Trump campaign official Rick Gates and political operative Roger Stone, one of President Donald Trump's closest confidants.

Iran's foreign minister said the Trump administration's demands to change its nuclear agreement with world powers were unacceptable. Trump must decide to withdraw from the accord by the end of next week. (Reuters)

The president has ordered the Pentagon to prepare options for drawing down U.S. troops in South Korea, The New York Times reported. The reduction in troops is not intended to be a bargaining chip in a meeting between Trump and Kim Jong Un.

Trump will address the National Rifle Association, for the fourth year in a row, after he temporarily strayed from the group's strong opposition to tougher gun controls following the school shooting in Florida that left 17 people dead. (AP)

Residents in two subdivisions of Hawaii were forced to evacuate after the eruption of lava from the Kilauea volcano. There have been no deaths or injuries reported. The area had several small earthquakes in recent days. (NY Times)

The 2018 Nobel Prize in Literature will be awarded in 2019 instead of this year. The move came after the academy that selects the winner was engulfed in a sex abuse scandal. Six academy members have stepped down over the crisis. (USA Today)

The Department of Agriculture recalled more than 35,000 pounds of raw ground beef from Kroger stores. The recall came after a reported complaint from a consumer of hard plastic pieces found in one of the products. (Axios)

Twitter (TWTR) has urged its users to change their passwords, after a glitch in its internal computer system caused some passwords to be readable. The social media company also said it saw no evidence of a breach or misuse. (CNBC)


Activision Blizzard (ATVI) earned an adjusted 38 cents per share for its latest quarter, three cents above estimates, while the video game maker's revenue also topped forecasts on the strength of sales for its "Call of Duty" game. However, Activision did issue weaker than expected guidance for the current quarter.

CBS (CBS) came in 15 cents ahead of forecasts with adjusted quarterly profit of $1.34 per share, with revenue topping forecasts as well. CBS saw growth in ad sales as well as affiliate and subscription fees.

Shake Shack (SHAK) earned an adjusted 15 cents per share for its latest quarter, compared to a consensus estimate of eight cents, with the restaurant chain's revenue exceeding estimates as well. Shake Shack also raised its full-year outlook.

GoPro (GPRO) lost 34 cents per share for the first quarter, three cents smaller than Wall Street had anticipated. The high-definition camera maker posted higher than expected revenue as well, with sales of entry level cameras helping its results.


"May the 4th" be with you! Today is Star Wars Day, a day for lovers of Jedi, the Resistance and the Skywalkers. This year's holiday comes before the next film in the "Star Wars" saga, "Solo: A Star Wars Story," which will release later this month. (USA Today)