Morning Brief

What to watch today: Trump blasts Fed, Boeing predicts summer Max delay, virus spreads to US


U.S. stock futures are poised to erase Tuesday's losses despite concerns about the China-based virus that has resulted in nine deaths, as well as Boeing's announcement about further delays in the return of the 737 Max jet. Boeing's losses accounted for about half the Dow's Wednesday drop, which ended a five-day win streak. The Nasdaq did set an intraday record high Tuesday, and the S&P 500 was a fraction of a point away from doing the same before the day's gains were erased. (CNBC)

On today's economic calendar, the National Association of Realtors releases December existing home sales at 10 a.m. ET. The Mortgage Bankers Association will release its weekly look at mortgage applications at 7 a.m. ET. The usual Wednesday release by the Energy Department on oil and gasoline inventories will be delayed until Thursday due to the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday on Monday. (CNBC)

Meanwhile, world leaders continue to meet at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Click here to follow our coverage, including an exclusive interview with President Donald Trump. (CNBC)

Dow component Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) leads this morning's list of corporate earnings reports, with Abbott Labs (ABT), Baker Hughes (BKR), Fifth Third Bankcorp (FITB) and Northern Trust also releasing quarterly numbers. After-the-bell reports are expected from Citrix Systems (CTRX), Kinder Morgan (KMI), Raymond James (RJF) and Texas Instruments (TXN).

Netflix (NFLX) added 8.8 million net subscribers in the fourth quarter, on par with the 8.8 million added last year and ahead of the company's internal forecast of 7.6 million. The streaming platform said growth in the U.S. and Canada is slowing rather dramatically. The company added just 550,000 net subscribers in the region this quarter, and just 420,000 in the U.S., down from 1.75 million in the same quarter one year ago. (CNBC)


President Donald Trump told CNBC Wednesday that the U.S. economy's GDP growth would have been closer to 4% if it weren't for the lingering effect of Federal Reserve rate hikes. "But we had Boeing (BA). We had the big strike with General Motors (GM). We had things happen that are very unusual to happen," Trump said.

* Read the transcript of CNBC's interview with President Trump in Davos

Trump also said the EU has "no choice" but to negotiate a new trade deal with the U.S. The president met with European Union President Ursula von der Leyen at the World Economic Forum and told CNBC's Joe Kernen that the pair had a "great talk."

The World Health Organization will convene a panel of experts in Switzerland today to consider whether a mysterious coronavirus that has killed at least nine people and sickened hundreds of others in China should be a global health emergency. Public health officials have confirmed the first U.S. case of the virus in Washington state. (CNBC)

* Trump says he trusts China's Xi on coronavirus and the US has it 'totally under control' here (CNBC)
* Chinese airlines, hotels could be hit hardest if coronavirus outbreak drags on (CNBC)

Boeing (BA) is telling airlines and suppliers that it doesn't expect regulators to sign off on the 737 Max until the middle of 2020, months later than the manufacturer previously expected, CNBC reported. The extended delay poses another headache for carriers who have already missed one peak travel season without the fuel-efficient planes.

Senate Democrats won two key changes to the rules of Trump's impeachment trial as proceedings kicked off Tuesday afternoon. Each side will now have three days to make its opening statements instead of two. The Senate will also automatically admit evidence from the House investigation into Trump last fall. (CNBC)

* Trump impeachment trial: Here are the highlights from the first day of debate in the Senate (CNBC)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren said that if she is elected president, she would create an independent task force in the Justice Department to investigate corruption by government officials during the Trump administration. The Democratic presidential hopeful said her goal is to restore "integrity and competence" to the federal government after President Trump leaves office. (CNBC)

* In reversal, Clinton says she'd back Sanders if he is the Democratic nominee (AP)
* Democrats swarm industrial Iowa to prove they can beat Trump (AP)

The Trump administration reportedly plans to add seven countries to a group of nations subject to travel restrictions. The restrictions would apply to travelers and immigrants from Belarus, Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Nigeria, Sudan and Tanzania. The Wall Street Journal reported that the list isn't finalized, as the White House is still debating on countries.

U.S. prosecutors will begin presenting their rape case against Harvey Weinstein today, with the once powerful Hollywood producer facing life in prison if convicted, in a trial that has become a watershed moment for the #MeToo movement. Weinstein, 67, has pleaded not guilty to charges of sexually assaulting two women. (Reuters)


BlackRock (BLK) has built a 5.12% stake in Toshiba Machine, a former Toshiba subsidiary that has been targeted by Japan's most prominent activist investor.

Xerox (XRX) is preparing to nominate as many as 11 directors to HP's (HPQ) board, The Wall Street Journal reported, as the company seeks to push its $33.5 billion takeover offer for the personal computer maker.

Toyota (TM) said it would recall 3.4 million vehicles globally due to an electronic defect that could prevent airbags from deploying in a crash.

Tesla (TSLA) crossed the $100 billion market cap threshold in off-hours trading. A number of stock option bonuses for CEO Elon Musk will trigger if the market cap stays at $100 billion or more for an average of one month and six months.

Intel (INTC) named Medtronic (MDT) CEO Omar Ishrak as its new independent chairman effective immediately, after Andy Bryant stepped down from that role at the chipmaker earlier this month.

A new, low-cost Apple (AAPL) iPhone will go into mass production in February, Bloomberg reported.

IBM (IBM) reported better-than-expected quarterly profit. Revenue also came in better than Street forecasts and broke a five-quarter streak of year-over-year declines. IBM also gave better-than-expected full-year 2020 earnings guidance.

United Airlines (UAL) beat estimates by 2 cents with quarterly profit of $2.67 per share, while the airline's revenue was slightly above expectations. United's performance came despite numerous flight cancellations resulting from the grounding of Boeing's 737 Max jet.


Yankees legend Derek Jeter was voted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame 2020 class on Tuesday but fell one vote short of a unanimous selection. Larry Walker, who won a National League MVP award and played for the Montreal Expos, Colorado Rockies and St. Louis Cardinals, was also voted into the Hall of Fame. (CNBC)