Morning Brief

What to watch today: House votes on impeachment, FedEx shares sink and teens vaping pot



U.S. stock futures were pointing to modest gains at the Wednesday open, following more record closes for the major averages. The S&P 500 leads the pack with 30 record closes for 2019, although the Nasdaq Composite has the largest year-to-date gain at just under 33%. The Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq have all risen for five straight sessions, giving the Dow its longest win streak in three months and the Nasdaq its longest in more than five months. (CNBC)

No major government economic reports are on today's calendar. Though CNBC's Steve Liesman interviews New York Fed President John Williams at 10:15 a.m. ET on "Squawk On the Street."

Weekly mortgage applications drop 5% as rates flatten (CNBC)

General Mills (GIS) and Paychex (PAYX) are out with quarterly earnings this morning, while Micron Technology (MU) and Herman Miller (MLHR) issue their numbers after the bell. (CNBC)

Shares of FedEx (FDX) were sinking about 7% in the pre-market after the delivery giant reported worse-than-expected adjusted quarterly earnings and revenue. FedEx also cut its fiscal 2020 profit forecast on higher costs and the end of its delivery relationship with Amazon (AMZN), among other factors. (CNBC)

* Amazon sellers are the latest casualty from the company's spat with FedEx (CNBC)


The House will vote today on whether to make President Donald Trump only the third president in American history to be formally impeached. Yesterday, Trump sent House Speaker Nancy Pelosi a raging, six-page letter in which he tore into the impeachment process currently underway, calling it an "illegal, partisan attempted coup." (CNBC)

Americans are split on impeachment but really like President Trump's handling of the economy (CNBC)
* How many on Wall Street are preparing for a second term for Trump (CNBC)
* McConnell rejects Schumer's demand to call White House officials to testify (CNBC)

The House had a busy day ticking off all of its end-of-year boxes. It passed a $1.4 trillion spending package, sending it to the Senate as Congress rushes to prevent a government shutdown; cleared a new North American trade deal; and outlined the rules governing the floor debate on Trump's impeachment. (CNBC)

* Congress poised to raise minimum age to buy tobacco to 21 (CNBC)

More teens are regularly using marijuana by vaping rather than smoking, even as mysterious lung illness claims young lives across the U.S. Fourteen percent of 12th graders said they vaped marijuana in the previous month, which nearly doubled from 2018, according to the NIH's Monitoring the Future survey.

Billionaire former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg won't have to file a mandatory financial disclosure until after Iowa's presidential contest due to a granted extension. Only Bloomberg, fellow billionaire Tom Steyer and former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick have yet to release their financials. (AP)

Negotiators have reached a tentative deal to end a labor dispute that led all the qualifiers for Thursday's 2020 Democratic presidential debate to threaten a boycott. Last week, all seven candidates who were scheduled to take the stage in the debate said they would skip the event if necessary rather than cross a picket line. (CNBC)

The boards of Fiat Chrysler and Peugeot signed a binding merger deal today creating the world's fourth-largest auto company with the scale to confront the challenges of stricter emissions regulations and the transition to new driving technologies. The new group will be led by PSA's CEO Carlo Tavares. (AP)

A bankruptcy judge approved PG&E's (PCG) $13.5 billion settlement with victims of Californian wildfires, and the company's embattled stock rallied as the utility gained momentum to emerge from bankruptcy in June as planned. The judge also approved an $11 billion agreement with insurance companies. (Reuters)


The FTC is seeking to stop drug maker Illumina (ILMN) from buying Pacific Biosciences of California (PACB) over possible antitrust concerns. Illumina said it disagreed with the FTC action and would push for the deal to close.

Cigna (CI) will sell its non-health benefits unit to New York Life for more than $6 billion, reported the Financial Times.

Cintas (CTAS) reported quarterly profit of $2.27 per share, beating the consensus estimate of $2.03, with the uniform maker's revenue also coming in above estimates. Results got a boost from organic revenue growth of 10.6% in the company's First Aid and Safety Services unit.

Steelcase (SCS) beat estimates by 11 cents with quarterly profit of 46 cents per share, with the office furniture maker's revenue also exceeding Wall Street forecasts. Steelcase reported particularly strong profit growth in the Americas and EMEA (Europe, Middle East, and Africa) regions.


SnapChat's "Cameo" feature, which basically allows you to deepfake yourself into a video or GIF, debuts worldwide today. "With Cameos, you become the star of short, looping videos that you can customize with your own face," Snapchat said in a press release. (USA Today)