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Morning Brief

Dow futures get a boost | US-China talks set for next week | Amazon bolts NYC


Stock futures were lower in early trading this morning but turned higher after Chinese President Xi Jinping said trade talks with the U.S. would continue next week in Washington. (CNBC)

Xi's comments on talks next week came after he met with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in China Friday, capping a full week of negotiations at senior and deputy levels in Beijing. (Reuters)

The major stock averages on Wall Street remain on track for another positive week, the eighth straight for the Dow and Nasdaq and the seventh straight in the past eight for the S&P 500. (CNBC)

* Cramer: Market's 'safe' stocks might not be so safe anymore (CNBC)

On the Friday economic calendar, January data on import and export prices are out at 8:30 a.m. ET, January industrial production figures are out at 9:15 a.m. ET, the University of Michigan's preliminary February consumer sentiment index is out at 10 a.m. ET. (CNBC)

PepsiCo (PEP), Deere (DE), Moody's (MCO), and Newell Brands (NWL) issue their quarterly earnings before today's opening bell. There are no earnings reports of note scheduled for after today's closing bell. (CNBC)

* PepsiCo earnings in line with estimates but forecasts weak 2019 (CNBC)

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) trimmed its stake in Apple (AAPL) – its largest holding – during the fourth quarter, and dissolved its stake in Oracle (ORCL), according to its latest quarterly SEC filing. (CNBC)


President Donald Trump will sign spending legislation to prevent a government shutdown while declaring a national emergency to try to build his proposed border wall, the White House confirmed. (CNBC)

* Congress passes bill to prevent another US government shutdown, sending it to Trump (CNBC)
* Pelosi warns GOP: Dem president could declare gun violence a national emergency (CNBC)

Trump's nominee for attorney general, William Barr, was confirmed in the Senate in a 54-45 vote to take over the Justice Department, where he will oversee special counsel Robert Mueller's Russia probe. (CNBC)

Most of the 25,000 jobs that were supposed to come to Amazon's HQ2 in New York will now go elsewhere, now that Amazon (AMZN) has backed of its agreement. Most of those jobs will be spread across 17 corporate offices. (CNBC)

* Ocasio-Cortez: 'Everyday New Yorkers defeated Amazon's corporate greed' (CNBC)

Facebook (FB) maintains a list of individuals that its security guards must "be on lookout" for. The company's security team is capable of tracking these individuals' whereabouts using the location data they provide through its apps and websites. (CNBC)

* Report: FTC talking to Facebook about huge fine

Reuters reported that Lyft will pitch investors on its fast growth in the U.S. as it seeks to beat out Uber to become the first publicly listed ride-hailing company. The company has pushed aggressively into smaller and mid-sized cities.

Walmart (WMT) over the next few weeks will be bringing 50-foot tractor-trailers to the parking lots of some of its stores to let customers experience DreamWorks Animation's "How to Train Your Dragon" using virtual reality technology. (CNBC)

The CDC said this flu season so far hasn't been as severe as last year, though activity is starting to pick up. Fewer people have sought outpatient care or have been hospitalized for flu-like illnesses this season. (CNBC)


CBS (CBS) reported adjusted quarterly profit of $1.50 per share, 2 cents below forecasts, while revenue was also short of estimates. CBS points to a drop in sales and licensing fees for its programs from other distributors. It did say it expects subscribership to its CBS All-Access streaming service to more than triple over the next three years.

Nvidia (NVDA) beat Wall Street forecasts by 5 cents with adjusted quarterly profit of 80 cents per share, while the graphics chipmaker's revenue came in slightly above estimates. It also forecast better than expected sales for 2019.

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) announced a larger-than-expected dividend after reporting that profit more than doubled in 2018, but also warned of a potentially negative Brexit impact.

Blackstone (BX) and fellow U.S. private equity firm Hellman & Friedman have offered to buy Germany's Scout24 for $6.4 billion including debt. If accepted, the buyout of the online classified ad provider would be the largest-ever buyout of a German company by private equity.

Applied Materials (AMAT) reported adjusted quarterly profit of 81 cents per share, beating estimates by 2 cents, while the semiconductor manufacturing equipment maker saw revenue come in above forecasts as well. However, it issued weaker than expected profit and revenue guidance for the current quarter.

XPO Logistics (XPO) came in 8 cents shy of estimates with adjusted quarterly profit of 72 cents per share, with the transportation company's revenue also falling short. XPO also warned that its 2019 outlook would be negatively impacted by a drop in business from an unidentified major customer.

Caesars Entertainment (CZR) will be pushed by investor Carl Icahn to consider selling itself, according to the Wall Street Journal. The paper said the move comes after the casino operator received at least two takeover approaches.

Chemours (CC) reported adjusted quarterly profit of $1.05 per share, beating estimates by 6 cents. But the chemical maker saw revenue come up shy of Wall Street forecasts, and it also issued a weaker than expected 2019 earnings outlook.

TrueCar (TRUE) fell 2 cents short of estimates with adjusted quarterly profit of three cents per share, with the car-buying service's revenue also falling short of analyst estimates. TrueCar also announced a 20 percent stake in Accu-Trade a provider of vehicle appraisal technology.


There's three weeks to go until "Captain Marvel" hits theaters. Disney (DIS) and Marvel's first female-led superhero adventure is tracking for an opening weekend of $100 million, according to early estimates. (Variety)