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Dow Jones Futures Today
Dow Jones futures today (Wednesday) forecasted a 106-point decline from Tuesday's close as roughly 40% of stocks in China have halted trading today. Chinese stocks slumped again today as its nation's massive sell-off continues. Chinese shares on the Shanghai Composite have fallen roughly 30% in less than three weeks.
Top News in the Stock Market Today
- Stock Market Today: This morning, the June-ending earning season officially kicks off. Investors will also be paying close attention to the release of minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee's June meeting and the weekly crude inventory update.
- Greek Tragedy: Eurozone members said Greek leaders have until Sunday to develop a new proposal to address the fact that the nation owes a payment of €3.5 billion ($3.8 billion) to the European Central Bank by July 20. Although Greek citizens overwhelmingly rejected sweeping reforms that would prevent the nation from falling out of the Eurozone, Greece's prime minister is poised to offer a new set of proposals that could keep the nation in the Eurozone. Concerns remain about what happens if Greece exits the euro, but the markets seem to view China's market woes as a long-term challenge that many investors can address later. [Editor's Note: Money Morning Chief Investment Strategist Keith Fitz-Gerald sat down with FOX News while the markets roiled and distilled a very simple message about what's going wrong in Greece. Watch Keith as he offers a valuable breakdown of Greece's woes and calmly summarizes the problem…]
- Oil Outlook: Oil prices were up marginally as nuclear talks between Iran and the West failed to produce a deal and energy watchdogs predicted a decline in crude oil stocks. WTI crude futures for August ticked up 0.1% this morning to hit $52.41 per barrel. Meanwhile, Brent prices added 0.6% to hit $57.18 per barrel.
- Earnings Reports: Companies reporting earnings this morning include Alcoa Inc. (NYSE: AA), Bank of South Carolina Corp. (Nasdaq: BKSC), Ceres Inc. (Nasdaq: CERE), Chase Corp. (NYSE MKT: CCF), and WD-40 Co. (Nasdaq: WDFC).
Pre-Market Movers in the Stock Market Today: MSFT, AAPL, CHK
- Pre-Market Movers No. 1, MSFT: Shares of Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) were retreating this morning on news the software giant is expected to announced another round of layoffs as soon as tomorrow. The New York Times reports the new layoffs are in addition to the 18,000 employees Microsoft said it was prepared to let go by the end of the year.
- Pre-Market Movers No. 2, AAPL: Shares of Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) slipped 0.6% on news that Slice Intelligence said the company's Apple Watch sales have cratered by 90% since its opening week. To make matters more concerning, the bulk of the company's sales have been on its lower-profit "Sport" version of its products. Despite concerns about the Apple Watch, the company dominates the smartphone industry and has prepared to manufacture the next version of the iPhone. Credit Suisse set its price target at $145 for Apple stock and said it predicts iPhone growth sat at 60% in the June-ending quarter.
- Pre-Market Movers No. 3, CHK: Shares of Chesapeake Energy Corp. (NYSE: CHK) were down more than 2% in pre-market hours. The downturn comes after it added almost 10% on Tuesday, its best daily performance in six months. The stock is down 41% over the last year, but a strong bounce came after Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS) said the company has the potential to see its stock return to 52-week highs.
Stocks to Watch Today: DIS, PLUG, SYMC
- Stocks to Watch No. 1, DIS: Global entertainment giant Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) announced it has obtained a 30-year tax break from the State of California that will not require them to collect taxes on park tickets at Disneyland. In exchange for the tax deal, the company will spend $1 billion on its two local parks. The new deal comes before a 2016 expiration of its previous 20-year tax moratorium.
- Stocks to Watch No. 2, PLUG: Shares of Plug Power Inc. (Nasdaq: PLUG) popped more than 13% yesterday after the company announced it was expected to meet its 2015 financial targets. The company said that it has recorded "strong fuel cell and hydrogen infrastructure shipments." [Editor's Note: Here's how you should play PLUG stock…]
- Stocks to Watch No. 3, SYMC: Reuters reports that cybersecurity giant Symantec Corp. (Nasdaq: SYMC) is discussing selling its data storage division, Veritas, to private equity giant The Carlyle Group LP (Nasdaq: CG). Any deal would likely fall into the range of $7 billion to $8 billion.
Today's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)
- MBA Mortgage Applications at 7 a.m.
- EIA Petroleum Status Report at 10:30 a.m.
- 10-Year Note Auction at 1 p.m.
- San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank President John Williams Speaks at 2 p.m.
- FOMC Minutes at 2 p.m.
What Investors Must Know This Week
- Does Twitter's New Shopping Feature Make TWTR Stock a Buy?
- Small-Cap Investing Forecast for H2 2015: Biggest Profit Trends
- Five Reasons Disney (NYSE: DIS) Stock Will Double Your Money
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About the Author
Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, and consultant with degrees from Northwestern, Johns Hopkins, Purdue, and Indiana University. He is a seasoned financial and political risk analyst, with a focus on stocks, hedge funds, private equity, blockchain, and housing policy. He has conducted risk assessment projects for clients in 27 countries, and consulted on policy and financial operations for some of the nation's largest financial institutions, including a $1.5 trillion credit fund, a $43 billion credit and auto loan giant, as well as two of the largest Wall Street banks by assets under management.
Garrett joined Money Map Press as an economist and researcher in 2011, specializing in alternative strategies with an emphasis on fundamental and technical analysis.