Equities look ready to rebound this morning following a big drop on Friday that left the major averages with losses of around 2.0% apiece. The S&P 500 futures are up 14 points (or 0.6%), the Nasdaq futures are up 43 points (or 0.7%), and the Dow futures are up 160 points (or 0.7%).
Several White House officials downplayed the possibility of a trade war between the U.S. and China over the weekend, with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin saying that he "doesn't expect there will be a trade war." Chinese President Xi Jinping is set to make a speech at the Boao Forum tomorrow, and traders will be watching to see if he addresses the ongoing threat of tariffs between his country and the U.S.
Overseas, equity indices in Asia began the week on a higher note, with Hong Kong's Hang Seng (+1.3%) leading the charge, while the major indices in Europe are currently trading mixed. Deutsche Bank is the top performer in Germany, up 3.0%, after naming Christian Sewing as its new Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately.
Meanwhile, in the U.S. bond market, Treasuries are down this morning, pushing the yield on the benchmark 10-yr note up two basis points to 2.80%.
Investors will not receive any economic data today.
In U.S. corporate news:
- Merck (MRK 55.14, +1.78): +3.3% following a positive phase 3 trial for its cancer treatment Keytruda.
- General Motors (GM 38.50, +0.82): +2.2% after being upgraded to 'Overweight' from 'Equal-Weight' at Morgan Stanley.
Reviewing overnight developments:
- Equity indices in the Asia-Pacific region began the week on a mostly higher note. Japan's Nikkei +0.5, Hong Kong's Hang Seng +1.3%, China's Shanghai Composite +0.2%, India's Sensex +0.5%.
- In economic data:
- China's FX Reserves $3.14 trillion, as expected (last $3.13 trillion)
- Japan's February adjusted Current Account surplus JPY1.02 trillion (expected surplus of JPY1.39 trillion; last surplus of JPY2.02 trillion). March Household Confidence 44.3 (expected 44.6; last 44.3). March Economy Watchers Current Index 48.9 (expected 48.1; last 48.6)
- In news:
- The Boao Forum is taking place until Wednesday, and there are hopes that China's President Xi Jinping will talk about trade tomorrow.
- Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda began his new term, reiterating the BoJ's intention to reach the elusive 2.0% inflation target.
- Data released by the Bank of Korea showed that the real interest rates fell into negative territory last year, as inflation of 1.90% exceeded the average annual interest rate for savings accounts (1.56%).
- Major European indices are mixed. UK's FTSE -0.2%, France's CAC +0.3%, Germany's DAX +0.6%.
- In economic data:
- Eurozone April Sentix Investor Confidence 19.6 (expected 21.2; last 24.0)
- UK's March Halifax House Price Index +1.5% month-over-month (expected 0.1%; last 0.5%); +2.7% year-over-year (expected 2.1%; last 1.8%)
- Germany's February trade surplus EUR19.20 billion (expected surplus of EUR23.10 billion; last surplus of EUR21.50 billion). February Imports -1.3% month-over-month (expected 0.3%; last -0.2%) and February Exports -3.2% month-over-month (expected 0.2%; last -0.4%)
- Swiss March Unemployment Rate held at 2.9%, as expected
- In news:
- Deutsche Bank has contributed to the outperformance after Christian Sewing was named new Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately.
- Coalition talks are set to continue in Italy this week, but center right parties have indicated they intend to stay united, meaning there is a low likelihood of a government composed of Movimento Cinque Stelle and Lega.