Morning Update: Stocks Fall as Tension in the Middle East Rises

First Look

Stock are looking to open lower Monday morning. Tensions remain high in the Middle East as President Trump tweeted that “If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran”, adding that the country should “Never threaten the United States again!”. The tension comes after Iran threatened to resume production of enriched uranium, which would violate terms of the 2015 international nuclear deal. The country is also suspected of damaging several oil tankers in the Persian Gulf. Trump said in a taped Fox News interview Sunday “I just don’t want them to have nuclear weapons and they can’t be threatening us”. Both sides continue to insist they do not want conflict. The U.S. has been withdrawing diplomats from Iraq and have hastened the deployment of a U.S. aircraft carrier and bomber group to the Persian Gulf. Tech companies and chipmakers continue to fall after the president’s moves to prevent Chinese phone maker Huawei from doing business in the U.S., including buying components from American companies. Intel (INTC) and Qualcomm (QCOM) are reported to have told employees that they will not provide the Chinese company with components until further notice. Alphabet Inc.’s Google (GOOGL) reported that it will not provide hardware or software to the company. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell is scheduled to speak tonight at 7:00 PM ET on risks to the financial system. The Dow Jones is down -0.45%, the S&P 500 is down -0.56%, the Nasdaq is down -1.21%.

Today's market outlook is Neutral

Education is the passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to those who prepare for it today.
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Stocks on the Move

News Corp Class B (NWS), Kellogg Company (K) and Mattel Inc (MAT) are moving higher this morning, while Xilinx, Inc. (XLNX), QUALCOMM, Inc. (QCOM) and Qorvo Inc (QRVO) are headed lower. Target Corporation (TGT), United Continental Holdings Inc (UAL) and Burberry Group plc Preference Shares (BURBY) were upgraded by analysts this morning, while Deutsche Bank AG (DB), Baidu Inc (BIDU) and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co (BMY) were downgraded.

International Markets

Stocks in Asia are mixed. The Mumbai Sensex is up 3.75%, the Australia ASX All Ordinaries is up 1.62%, the Nikkei 225 is up 0.24% the Shanghai SE Composite Index is down -0.41% and the Hang Seng is down -0.57%. Stocks in Europe are down. The Euro Stoxx 50 is down -1.5%, the CAC 40 is down -1.49%, the DAX is down -1.44% and the FTSE 100 is down -0.89%.

Futures and Currencies

Energy futures are up today. The price for West Texas Intermediate crude oil is up 0.23 at 62.99 per barrel. Brent crude is up 0.37 at 72.58 per barrel. Natural Gas is up 0.05 at 2.68. Precious metals are down this morning. Gold is down -0.43 at 1277.1 per ounce. Platinum is down -2.49 at 816.4 while silver is flat at 14.39. The dollar is down compared to the major currencies today. The greenback is down against the euro, down against the Yen and down against the Pound.

Put/Call Ratio

Yesterday, 1,114,336 call contracts traded on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) compared to 730,249 put contracts. The single-session put/call was 0.66 while the 20-day moving average is now at 0.65.

Earnings Expected Today

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