US STOCKS-Wall St to open lower; bank earnings in focus

Dow futures drift higher as stocks set to notch a fourth straight week of gains
December 20, 2019
US STOCKS-Wall St drops as geopolitical risks weigh on sentiment
December 20, 2019

US STOCKS-Wall St to open lower; bank earnings in focus

US STOCKS-Wall St to open lower; bank earnings in focus

By Yashaswini Swamynathan

April 13 (Reuters) – U.S. stocks looked set to open lower on Thursday, following President Donald Trump‘s remarks on the U.S. dollar and interest rates, while investors assessed bank earnings.

Shares of JPMorgan and Citigroup rose about 0.4 percent premarket after the two banks reported quarterly profits that beat analysts‘ expectations.

However, Wells Fargo slipped 1.2 percent at $52.49 after reporting a slight drop in quarterly profit.

The results come after a frenetic rally in bank shares that started in November on bets that President Donald Trump would rein in banking regulations and introduce other business friendly policies.

“Investors will (be) faced with another day of market uncertainties as bank earnings, geopolitical worries and Trump‘s comments on the greenback are being reflected in the volatility index that is flashing trouble ahead,” Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial, wrote in a note.

The dollar, already suffering from a risk-off mood in the market amid geopolitical tensions, hit its lowest level this month after Trump told the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday that the currency “was getting too strong” and that he would like to see interest rates stay low.

Gold, which has become the preferred asset this week as investors sought safe havens, was up 0.11 percent and continues to trade at its highest level since November.

Dow e-minis were down 31 points, or 0.15 percent at 8:30 a.m. ET, with 32,649 contracts changing hands.

S&P 500 e-minis were down 5.5 points, or 0.23 percent, with 226,755 contracts traded.

Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 9.75 points, or 0.18 percent, on volume of 36,779 contracts.

Bank of America and Goldman Sachs are due to report results next week.

Shares of Applied Optoelectronics jumped nearly 23 percent to $50.15 after the company said it expected first-quarter earnings to exceed its forecast.

Trading volumes could be lower than usual on Thursday ahead of the Good Friday holiday. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D‘Silva)