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The Breakfast Briefing: Stocks Whipsawed Before Trade Talks

FYI: U.S. stock index futures were slightly lower Thursday morning, as investors closely monitor the status of high-level trade talks between the world’s two largest economies.

At around 04:45 a.m. ET, Dow futures slipped 27 points, indicating a negative open of more than 24 points. Futures on the S&P and Nasdaq were marginally lower.

Market focus is largely attuned to global trade developments after a slew of conflicting reports around Thursday’s U.S.-China trade talks sent investors for a wild ride.

The initial report that hit futures came from the South China Morning Post, which said the U.S. and China made no progress in deputy-level trade talks this week.

Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average gauge slipped 0.3% as investors grew concerned that the U.S.-China trade negotiations, set to resume later in the day, may fail to break a five-month stalemate with both sides dialing back expectations in public comments. Investors have been trying to assess the likelihood of a partial trade deal, concessions by Beijing and a potential delay in additional tariffs by the Trump administration.

The Stoxx Europe 600 gauge wavered between gains and losses. In Asia, the Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.8% while Japan’s Nikkei 225 rose 0.5%.

Philips Electronics was among the biggest losers in Europe. The stock declined by about 8% in Amsterdam after the Dutch company issued a profit warning.

Meanwhile, luxury stock LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton gained 4.2% following better-than-expected revenue growth, even as the Hong Kong protests weighed on Asian sales. Christian Dior, which was acquired by LVMH in 2017, rose 3.3%.

Later in the day, investors will also be watching closely as the U.S. Labor Department publishes its consumer-price index, which measures changes in how much Americans are paying for items such as clothes, gas and food. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal expect the index rose 0.1% over a month in September rose and 1.8% over the prior year.












Cuirrent Futures:
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