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The Dow Jones Industrial Average will stay flat today as investors await congressional testimony from U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell. He'll address interest rate cuts and monetary policy over the next two days.
More on this below. Plus: U.S. and China officials are in talks once again.
Here are the numbers from Tuesday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
|Index||Previous Close||Point Change||Percentage Change|
Now, here's a closer look at today's Money Morning insight, the most important market events, and stocks to watch.
The Top Stock Market Stories for Wednesday
- Market watchers expect a 100% likelihood of interest rate cuts during the Fed's meeting at the end of July. However, investors will look for confirmation from Fed Chair Jerome Powell, who will kick off two days of testimony before Congress. Powell will speak on the state of the U.S. economy and what investors can expect moving forward. The Fed Chair will appear before the House Financial Services Committee on Wednesday morning and before the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday.
- On the trade front, U.S. and China officials are attempting to restore trade relations and avoid future tariffs. U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said that he and U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer spoke to Chinese Vice Premier Liu yesterday. China is looking for the United States to remove tariffs on $250 billion of its exports, while the U.S. aims to reduce technology theft, balance a massive trade deficit, and for China to increase its farm purchases.
- Oil prices ticked higher thanks to a larger-than-expected decline in U.S. inventory levels. The American Petroleum Institute announced that the United States saw its fourth weekly drop in crude stocks. The group said that inventories declined by 8.1 million barrels for the week to hit 461.4 million. That figure was roughly 5 million barrels more than analysts had expected. The Energy Information Administration will release an update later today.
Stocks to Watch Today: BA, LEVI, DB
- Shares of Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) are under pressure after the company announced that its second quarter aircraft deliveries fell by 37% year over year. The company's ongoing problems with its grounded 737 Max aircraft continue to weigh on the firm and its investors. Meanwhile, Airbus reported that it delivered 389 new planes over the first six months. That figure was a 28% jump from the same period in 2018.
- Shares of Levi Strauss & Co. (NYSE: LEVI) plunged more than 7.6% in pre-market hours after the iconic jeans company announced a huge year-over-year decline in its second quarter. The firm reported a 63% drop in Q2 profit despite recently experiencing one of the most successful IPOs of the year. The company blamed its profit decline on the high costs of taking itself public – including underwriting fees.
- Deutsche Bank AG (NYSE: DB) continues to slide as its turnaround strategy has done little to instill confidence in Germany's massive financial institution. The firm announced plans to fire 18,000 employees as it exits the global equity business. Now, the company is starting to face its next challenge: keeping its best employees and not losing them to rivals. The Financial Times reported that it was the best opportunity since the collapse of Lehman Brothers for global banks to poach talent from a major financial institution.
- Look for earnings reports this morning from Bed Bath & Beyond Inc. (NASDAQ: BBBY), MSC Industrial Direct Co. Inc. (NYSE: MSM), PriceSmart Inc. (NASDAQ: PSMT), and AngioDynamics Inc. (NASDAQ: ANGO).
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