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The Dow Jones today fell 122 points in pre-market trading after U.S. President Donald Trump announced plans to impose tariffs on all $505 billion in goods sent from China. The statement comes a day after Trump's negative comments about the U.S. Federal Reserve.
Trump broke precedent by criticizing the central bank over its recent rate hikes. He said in an interview with CNBC that he is "not thrilled" about the Fed's commitment to tightening monetary policy. "Because we go up and every time you go up, they want to raise rates again," he said. "I don't really – I am not happy about it. But at the same time, I'm letting them do what they feel is best."
Here are the numbers from Thursday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
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Now here's a closer look at today's Money Morning insight, the most important market events, and stocks to watch.
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The Top Stock Market Stories for Friday
- General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) leads the earnings calendar as reporting for the second quarter moves into full swing. The Boston-based conglomerate is expected to report earnings per share (EPS) of $0.18 on top of $29.76 billion in revenue.
- Former Dallas Federal Reserve Bank Vice President Jerry O'Driscoll offered some choice words for the U.S. central bank. In an interview with CNBC, O'Driscoll warned that the Fed is being "very aggressive" with interest rate policy in 2018. He warned the central bank is ignoring important factors like a rising dollar and the flattening yield curve. The former bank executive argued that he doesn't see the case for additional rate hikes in the year ahead. This is one reason why investors should protect themselves from any downside caused by the Fed.
- According to The Wall Street Journal, three top cybersecurity officials are departing their positions at the FBI. The departures are planned due to their ongoing concerns about cybersecurity attacks from abroad and disagreements with the Trump administration.
Three Stocks to Watch Today: MSFT, SKX, SNA
- Shares of Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) popped more than 3.2% after the cloud computing and software giant topped earnings expectations after the bell Thursday. The company topped $100 billion for its fiscal 2018. This is the first time that it has ever reached this revenue level for a year. The firm reported EPS of $1.13, topping Wall Street estimates by $0.05. The firm reported revenue of $30.09 billion, besting expectations of $29.21 billion.
- Shares of Snap-on Inc. (NYSE: SNA) popped more than 9% after the company reported after the bell Thursday. The tool and diagnostic equipment maker reported EPS of $3.12 on top of $954.6 million in revenue. The EPS figure easily beat Wall Street expectations of $2.95. However, the firm was slightly below revenue expectations.
- It will be a tough hangover for shareholders of Skechers USA Inc. (NYSE: SKX). Shares of the shoe manufacturer plunged more than 20% in pre-market hours after the company fell short of earnings expectations for the second consecutive quarter. The EPS figure of $0.29 was $0.12 short of Wall Street expectations. The company did meet revenue expectations of $1.13 billion for the second quarter.
- Other firms reporting earnings include Schlumberger Ltd. (NYSE: SLB), Honeywell International Inc. (NYSE: HON), Cleveland-Cliffs Inc. (NYSE: CLF), SunTrust Banks Inc. (NYSE: STI), Kansas City Southern (NYSE: KSU), Stanley Black & Decker Inc. (NYSE: SWK), State Street Corp. (NYSE: STT), and Baker Hughes Co. (NYSE: BHGE).
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.