Morning Brief

What to watch today: Dow to fall ahead of Fed decision and Pompeo meets with Saudi prince


Trading remained cautious ahead of the Fed's interest rate decision today, despite a virtual certainty among investors that policymakers will cut rates by 0.25%. In the prior five Fed meeting days this year, the Dow and S&P 500 have risen twice and fallen three times. The new day begins with the Dow having risen in nine of the past 10 sessions, and the S&P 500 and Nasdaq coming off their first gains in three sessions. (CNBC)

The Fed is expected to cut interest rates for the second time in a decade, but Fed Chairman Jerome Powell is unlikely to deliver the message markets want to hear on plans for future rate cuts in his 2 p.m. ET statement. Economists said it's unlikely the Fed forecast will include more than one more rate cut in its outlook for this year, presented on a chart, known as the "dot plot." Many in the markets are looking for two more cuts this year. (CNBC)

On today's economic calendar, August housing starts are be out at 8:30 a.m. ET. The Energy Department has its usual Wednesday look at oil and gasoline inventories at 10:30 a.m. ET. Food producer General Mills (GIS) issues quarterly earnings this morning, while office furniture maker Herman Miller (MLHR) is out after today's closing bell. (CNBC)

Shares of FedEx (FDX) were plunging about 11% in premarket trading after the company missed estimates with adjusted quarterly profit and revenue. The delivery service company also cut its full-year forecast. FedEx blames the slashed outlook on higher costs, lower revenue from Amazon (AMZN) deliveries, and a slowing global economy. (CNBC)

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U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is meeting with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman today to discuss the weekend attack and combat "Iranian aggression in the region." Some Trump administration officials have blamed Iran for the strikes, though Iran adamantly denies those claims. (The Hill)

* Iran's Rouhani blames US, Saudi for conflict in region (Reuters)
* Oil drops after historic surge as Saudis signal output to return to normal soon (CNBC)
* US citizens warned over traveling to Saudi Arabia (Reuters)

The Trump administration is expected to announce today plans to block California from setting its own vehicle emissions standards. The White House action comes amid its ongoing push to roll back Obama-era environmental rules that President Donald Trump argues have held back the U.S. economy. (CNBC)

* Day 2: Trump heads to San Diego amid California backlash (USA Today)
* Pelosi to Cramer: Trump 'had to do something' about China, but may have made the wrong move (CNBC)

Teen climate activist Greta Thunberg is testifying before Congress today to discuss the global climate crisis. Thunberg yesterday submitted a major global warming report to the politicians in hopes that they'll "listen to the scientists," rather than her. Her testimony comes ahead of youth climate strikes planned around the world for Friday. (Daily Beast)

* Thunberg meets with former President Barack Obama during her Washington visit (USA Today)

Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren, holding distinctly different advantages, have separated themselves from the crowded Democratic presidential field, a new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll shows. In the survey, conducted after the third Democratic debate, the former vice president draws 31% compared to 25% for the Massachusetts senator. (CNBC)

Facebook (FB) is partnering with Luxottica to make augmented reality glasses, according to people familiar with the matter who spoke to CNBC. The glasses are designed to replace smart phones, with Facebook hoping the partnership will allow the glasses to hit the market in the 2023-2025 time period.

* Google, Facebook cozy up to publishers as regulators circle (WSJ)
* Huawei says it will invest $1.5 billion in its developer program (CNBC)

Amazon (AMZN) unveiled a high definition version of its Amazon Music service, the first major music streaming service to do so. The new service will cost $12.99 per month for Prime members and $14.99 per month for non-members. (CNBC)

* CNBC's new Apple Watch review: changes seem minor, but the always-on display is now a must-have

People on Bermuda rushed to make final preparations for an expected close brush with Hurricane Humberto, a powerful Category 3 storm that caused authorities on the British Atlantic island to order early closings of schools, transportation and government offices today. Officials warn hurricane-force gusts will likely last until early tomorrow. (AP)

* Tropical Storm Imelda threatens to swamp portions of southeastern Texas (USA Today)


Adobe (ADBE) beat Wall Street estimates with adjusted quarterly profit and revenue. However, Adobe gave a lower than expected current quarter revenue forecast, due to slower than anticipated growth in its Marketo marketing software unit.

Chewy (CHWY) lost 10 cents per share for its latest quarter, 1 cent less than anticipated, while the pet products seller saw revenue modestly above forecasts. Chewy also gave current quarter revenue guidance that exceeds analyst forecasts.

Enbridge (ENB) won a legal challenge when the Minnesota Supreme Court declined to hear challenges to the pipeline operator's delayed "Line 3" oil pipeline project. The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission had approved the project last year.

American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) was rated "buy" in new coverage at D.A. Davidson, which called the apparel retailer an innovative competitor with "on-point" messaging to its customers.

Whirlpool (WHR) was downgraded to "sector weight" from "overweight" at KeyBanc, which cited weakening earnings momentum for the appliance maker.


A smiling panda will be the mascot for the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing. The choice of the iconic animal, considered the national treasure, was not a surprise to people in China. The giant panda was one of the five mascots for the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics, and it also was the symbol for the Asian Games in Beijing in 1990. (AP)