Stock futures are lower, putting the Dow's weekly gain in jeopardy

BY THE NUMBERS

U.S. stock futures were lower this morning, which could wipe out the Dow's small weekly gain and extend the week's losses for the S&P 500 and Nasdaq. The latter two are currently on pace for their biggest weekly decline since the final week of June. (CNBC)

The Federal Reserve should continue to raise rates at a gradual pace, Boston Fed President Eric Rosengren told CNBC today. His comments come ahead of the central bank's monetary policy meeting scheduled later this month.

The government is out with August employment report at 8:30 a.m. ET, with forecasts calling for 192,000 new non-farm jobs for the month. The unemployment rate is expected to fall to 3.8 percent from July's 3.9 percent, while average hourly earnings are seen rising 0.2 percent. (CNBC)

* Jobs market may be super strong but August employment report could still disappoint (CNBC)
* Manufacturing is firing on all cylinders, but a lack of skilled workers is squeezing the sector (CNBC)

Tesla stock was under pressure in the premarket this morning after CEO Elon Musk took investors by surprise late last night when he briefly smoked marijuana and drank whiskey during a live interview with comedian Joe Rogan, an advocate of legalizing weed. (CNBC)

* Musk says China has an advantage because its politicians are better at science (CNBC)

Tim Armstrong, the leader of Verizon's (VZ) digital media and advertising business, is reportedly in talks to exit. There were recent discussions about whether to spin off the Oath unit, which Armstrong leads. (WSJ)

Footwear and apparel retailer Genesco (GCO) is out with quarterly earnings this morning, on what otherwise is a very light earnings calendar. There are no reports scheduled after today's closing bell. (CNBC)

IN THE NEWS TODAY

President Donald Trump sought to play down an explosive opinion piece published in the New York Times this week, telling Fox News it appeared to be written by a fairly low-level individual. He said the White House is running like a well-oiled machine.

* Search for Trump critic intensifies (WSJ)
* Republicans blast op-ed but will leave fallout to Trump (USA Today)

Trump told "Fox & Friends" he won't consider a government shutdown over funding for his proposed border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border until after the November midterm elections. He said he doesn't want to hurt his party's chances during midterms.

* Trump slams Nike's Kaepernick ad as not appropriate: 'I honor the national anthem'

Trump will not answer federal investigators' questions about whether he tried to block the probe into Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election, the president's lawyer Rudy Giuliani told The Associated Press.

* Sen. Warren says legislators should invoke 25th amendment on Trump (Axios)

CNBC has learned the second stage of tax reform from House Republicans will aim to make individual cuts passed last year permanent and ease rules around retirement savings. The House GOP aims to vote on the proposal this month.

Three people are dead and two others are injured after a gunman walked and opened fire into a 31-story office tower in downtown Cincinnati. The gunman was identified as Omar Enrique Santa Perez, 29, of North Bend, Ohio. (NY Times)

Democratic senators, led by Cory Booker of New Jersey, released confidential documents related to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh over the objections of some Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee. (CNBC)

During a Senate testimony, Supreme Court nominee Kavanaugh, already vehemently opposed by abortion-rights advocates, further alienated that demographic when he referred to some forms of birth control as "abortion-inducing drugs." (USA Today)

The Wall Street Journal reported today that HNA Group, one of China's largest conglomerates and the owner of a $40 billion-plus empire of businesses and company stakes, will be exiting its 7.6 percent stake in Germany's Deutsche Bank.

Twitter (TWTR) permanently banned Alex Jones and his Infowars website from its platform, saying Jones violated Twitter's content policy. Jones was banned or suspended by other tech companies including Apple (AAPL), Facebook (FB) and YouTube. (CNBC)

Campbell Soup (CPB) is under increased pressure from investor Daniel Loeb's Third Point, with the Wall Street Journal reporting that Third Point plans to launch a proxy fight to replace the food company's entire board.

STOCKS TO WATCH

Mattel (MAT) plans to launch a theatrical film division to produce features based on its popular toys like Barbie, Hot Wheels, and other brands.

Five Below (FIVE) reported adjusted quarterly profit of 42 cents per share, 4 cents above estimates, with the discount retailer also reporting revenue that beat forecasts. The company also posted better than expected comparable store sales.

Broadcom (AVGO) came in 16 cents above estimates with adjusted quarterly profit of $4.98 per share, with the chip maker's revenue matching analyst projections. Broadcom's results were helped by growth in demand for data center-related products.

Palo Alto Networks (PANW) reported adjusted quarterly profit of $1.26 per share, 9 cents above consensus forecasts, while the cybersecurity software maker also saw revenue come in above estimates. Palo Alto also gave upbeat current quarter guidance.

Costco (COST) said August comparable store sales rose 9.5 percent, beating the 7.8 percent consensus estimate of analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters.

GameStop (GME) confirmed earlier reports that it was working with financial and legal advisers to help with a strategic and financial review of the videogame retailer's operations, including a possible sale. Separately, GameStop reported adjusted quarterly profit of 5 cents per share, 3 cents shy of estimates, though revenue did slightly exceed forecasts.

WATERCOOLER

Tennis superstar Serena Williams advances to the U.S. Open finale, facing No. 20 seed Naomi Osaka. With one more victory, Williams will earn her seventh US Open championship and her 24th major singles trophy. (ESPN)