Morning Brief

What to watch today: Dow to sink, China devalues currency, and Trump reacts to mass shootings



U.S. stock futures were pointing to a sharply lower open on Wall Street, which would extend losses for stocks following the worst week of 2019 for the S&P 500 and Nasdaq. Losses today's close would give the S&P 500 its longest losing streak since last October, while the Nasdaq would have its longest skid since November 2016. Today's indicated drop comes as China allows its currency to slide to its lowest level in more than a decade, with no solution in sight to the U.S.-China trade dispute. (CNBC)

The Chinese currency crossed the closely watched seven-yuan-for-a-dollar barrier today after another escalation in the trade war between Beijing and Washington. The sharp weakening in the Chinese currency came after President Donald Trump unexpectedly announced fresh tariffs on China last week, which are set to take effect on Sept. 1. (CNBC)

* 10-year Treasury yield falls to nearly three-year low as investors flee to safer assets (CNBC)
* Bitcoin surges past $11,000 as global stocks dive on trade worries (CNBC)

Trump overruled the adamant objections of nearly his entire trade team when he ordered the upcoming imposition of 10% tariffs on China's remaining $300 billion of exports to the U.S. Only Peter Navarro, a China hawk, did not object. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer were in Shanghai last week in an effort to restart stalled trade talks. (WSJ)

On today's light U.S. economic calendar, the Institute for Supply Management releases its non-manufacturing index for July at 10 a.m. ET. Meanwhile, Tyson Foods (TSN) is among the few companies releasing earnings this morning. Avis Budget (CAR), Caesars Entertainment (CZR), Marriott (MAR), Shake Shack (SHAK), and Take-Two Interactive (TTWO) are out with their quarterly numbers after today's closing bell. (CNBC)


Trump is set to make a statement today about the two mass shootings over the weekend in Ohio and Texas, killing at least 29 people. As investigators searched for a motive in the Dayton massacre, police in El Paso began to assemble a picture of a gunman apparently motivated by a hatred for immigrants. (CNBC)

* Trump tells reporters 'perhaps' more needs to be done on gun control (USA Today)
* US cybersecurity firm terminates service for 8chan after El Paso shooting (CNBC)
* Attack on Texas shoppers to be handled as domestic terrorism (AP)

Facebook (FB) plans to rebrand Instagram to "Instagram from Facebook" and WhatsApp to "WhatsApp from Facebook" to make it clearer they are owned by the tech giant, Time reported. Currently, the FTC is investigating whether the social media company has monopoly powers.

* Justice Department, FTC skirmish over antitrust turf (WSJ)

U.S. broadcaster Fox (FOXA) agreed to buy Credible Labs Inc (CRD) in a deal valuing the online finance broker at $397 million, as the Murdoch-controlled firm hunts for growth following the sale of its film and TV assets to Disney (DIS). (Reuters)

CVS Health (CVS) has a plan to win over millennials and it looks a lot like Amazon Prime: free home delivery of products from shampoo to cold medicine, all for an annual membership fee of $48. CVS' CarePass program goes nationwide today. (CNBC)

Sales of Huawei's smartphones are soaring in China due to a patriotic buying spree to help ease the impact of widening U.S. restrictions on the tech firm. Huawei's smartphone sales in China rose to a record 38% in its second quarter. (WSJ)

Carrie Lam, Hong Kong's embattled leader, said today she believes her city is on the verge of "a very dangerous situation." Hundreds of thousands of protesters have taken to the streets since early June, spurred by their opposition to a proposed bill that would have allowed people in Hong Kong to be extradited to Mainland China. (CNBC)

* Longstanding economic frustration is fueling Hong Kong's protests, expert says (CNBC)

HSBC, Europe's largest bank by assets, is planning to cut thousands of jobs after the surprise announcement of Chief Executive Officer John Flint's departure. Up to 2% of the bank's 237,685 employees are facing job layoffs and will target senior roles. (CNBC)

London's Heathrow Airport, the busiest in Europe, has cancelled 172 flights today and tomorrow due to a strike plans by thousands of workers. Members of their union overwhelmingly rejected the airports 7.3% pay increase offer. (AP)


Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B) missed estimates of its profit and revenue. Warren Buffett's company was hurt by weaker results at insurer Geico and lower cargo volumes at Berkshire's BNSF rail operation.

J.P. Morgan Chase (JPM) will lead an upcoming debt offering by The We Company, parent of workspace provider WeWork. Reuters reports that this puts JPMorgan in position to lead an initial public offering for WeWork later this year.

Uber Technologies (UBER) is unlikely to be successful in its attempt to get a new five-year license from London's transport regulator, according to a Sky News report. Uber is said to be expecting its application to result in another short term

Sohu (SOHU) reported an adjusted second quarter loss of $1.27 per share, wider than the loss of $1.11 per share anticipated by Wall Street analysts. The China-based internet firm also saw revenue come in below forecasts, with a drop in brand advertising revenue pressuring results.license of less than 2 years.


Universal's "Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw" dominated the box office this weekend, debuting in North America with $60.8 million in ticket sales. The Dwayne Johnson and Jason Statham-led film is expected to draw in more crowds internationally, where the franchise is hugely popular. (Variety)