Morning Brief

What to watch today: Dow to fall, US expands Chinese blacklist, and Trump tax suit dismissed


U.S. stock futures turned sharply lower this morning as a lack of optimism over this week's China trade talks continues to weigh on investor sentiment, following modest losses Monday on Wall Street. The Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq are coming off their first declines in three sessions, with the Nasdaq failing to register what would have been its first three day win streak in two months. (CNBC)

On today's economic calendar, the September producer price index is out at 8:30 a.m. ET. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell speaks at the annual meeting of the National Association for Business Economics at 2:30 p.m. ET. Chicago Fed President Charles Evans and Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari also have separate public appearances today. (CNBC)

* Trump's trade tweets have moved market's Fed expectations, Goldman says (CNBC)

Domino's Pizza (DPZ) and Helen of Troy (HELE) issue their quarterly earnings this morning, while Levi Strauss (LEVI) issues its earnings report after today's closing bell.

For more markets and investing content check out "Squawk Pod" from the production team behind CNBC's "Squawk Box." The opening hour of "Squawk on the Street" is also a podcast. Got any questions, comments or ideas for us here at the "Morning Squawk" newsletter? Email us


The U.S. is blacklisting a group of Chinese tech companies that develop facial recognition and other artificial intelligence technology that the U.S. says is being used to repress China's Muslim minority groups. The blacklisting comes just a few days before Chinese and U.S. negotiators meet for another round of high-level trade talks. (AP)

* Hong Kong exchange drops its $39 billion bid to buy the London Stock Exchange (Reuters)
* Protests squeezing Hong Kong economy, tourism, embattled city leader says (AP)

Chinese state-run television network CCTV said it was suspending the current broadcast arrangements for the NBA's preseason games in China. It follows a tweet made by Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey in which he showed support for the anti-government protests in Hong Kong. (CNBC)

* Alibaba shopping sites appear to have de-listed Houston Rockets products in China (CNBC)
* NBA chief Adam Silver says league won't compromise values ahead of China visit (Reuters)

Staff and lawmakers from the House will continue to hear from witnesses throughout the week regarding the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump. Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the E.U. who has become a key figure in the probe, will be deposed today. (AP)

The leaders of three House committees announced they have subpoenaed the Pentagon and the Office of Management and Budget for documents related to the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump. The offices have until Oct. 15 to comply. (CNBC)

A judge dismissed Trump's lawsuit seeking to block the release of his personal and corporate tax returns to the Manhattan district attorney. U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero is conducting a criminal investigation related to the president's company in how it accounted for hush money payments to two women ahead of the 2016 election. (CNBC)

Trump's decision to withdraw U.S. troops from northern Syria ahead of a long-planned Turkish military operation is being blasted by lawmakers and security experts in Washington, including Republicans better known for being loyal allies of the president. Sen. Lindsey Graham called the move "impulsive" and "a disaster in the making." (CNBC)

The Supreme Court hears arguments today in a set of cases that could determine whether millions of LGBT workers are protected under the nation's most powerful federal workplace anti-discrimination law. The court is expected to settle the question of whether LGBT individuals may be lawfully fired on the basis of their identities. (CNBC)

Southwest Airlines' (LUV) pilots filed a suit against Boeing (BA), saying the aircraft manufacturer misled the airline's labor union about the plane, which has been grounded for nearly seven months after two fatal crashes. Pilots said the planes' grounding cost them more than $100 million in lost income, because the ban forced the airline to cut back on flights. (CNBC)

* Friction between US, European regulators could delay 737 Max return to service (WSJ)

Kroger (KR) and Walgreens (WBA) are joining Walmart (WMT) and other retailers in discontinuing the sale of electronic cigarettes. With usage rising to a level the FDA has called an "epidemic" and heightened scrutiny, the Trump administration is readying a federal ban on flavored e-cigarettes. (CNBC)

* Researchers find e-cigarettes cause lung cancer in mice in first study tying vaping to cancer (CNBC)

Oracle (ORCL) is planning to hire 2,000 new workers as part of a plan to expand cloud computing services to more companies, according to Reuters. Oracle is seeking to step up competition with Amazon (AMZN) Web Services and Microsoft (MSFT).


Ambarella (AMBA) is among stocks that could be impacted by the U.S. move to blacklist Chinese artificial intelligence startups. The chip maker is a supplier to video surveillance firm Hikvision.

Target (TGT) was rated "strong buy" in new coverage at Raymond James, noting that the retailer is doing a good job at living up to its brand promise and adjusting well to the new world of retail.

Microsoft (MSFT) was upgraded to "buy" from "hold" at Jefferies, which said the company is now a large diversified business with a clear path to double-digit revenue growth for the foreseeable future.

Celanese (CE) is considering a possible breakup of the company, according to a Bloomberg report. The Texas-based chemical company is in the preliminary stages of a strategic review.

Hawaiian Holdings (HA) upgraded its guidance for current quarter revenue per available seat mile, projecting a 0.5% increase. The Hawaiian Airlines parent had previously projected a drop in that metric.


Three scientists won the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics today for their work in understanding how the universe has evolved, and the Earth's place in it. The prize was given to James Peebles "for theoretical discoveries in physical cosmology," and the other half jointly to Michel Mayor and Didier Queloz "for the discovery of an exoplanet orbiting a solar-type star." (AP)