ETF Preview: ETFs, Futures Point Higher Ahead of Powell Speech; Street Digests Q3 GDP Data

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Active broad-market exchange-traded funds ahead of Wednesday's regular session:

iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund ( EEM ): +0.6%

SPDR S&P 500 ( SPY ): +0.4%

VanEck Vectors Gold Miners ETF ( GDX ): -0.4%

United States Oil Fund ( USO ): -1.0%

Invesco QQQ Trust, Series 1 ( QQQ ): +0.7%

Broad Market Indicators

Broad-market exchange-traded funds, including IWM and IVV were lower. Actively traded PowerShares QQQ ( QQQ ) was up 0.7%.

US stock futures were mostly higher ahead of the open, and ahead of a speech by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, which is slated at 12:00 pm ET. Investors are still cautious, however, as they look for more hints at how the U.S.-China trade meeting will go at the upcoming G-20 summit, which starts Friday.

In economic data news, the Q3 gross domestic product (GDP) rose 3.5%, unchanged from the initial figures reported. Forecasts were for the GDP to be revised up to 3.6%.

The advance report for International Trade in Goods for October showed a deficit of $77.2 billion. The advance report for Wholesale Inventories for October showed an increase of 0.7%, while the advance report for Retail Inventories for October showed an increase of 0.9%.

Still ahead, the October figure for new home sales will be released at 10 am ET.

Power Play: Consumer

Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR (XLP) and Vanguard Consumer Staples ETF (VDC) and iShares Dow Jones U.S. Consumer Goods (IYK) were inactive.

Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR (XLY) and retail funds SPDR S&P Retail (XRT) and Market Vectors Retail ETF (RTH) were also quiet in pre-market trade.

Tiffany & Co. (TIF) fell 10% after it reported Q3 GAAP earnings of $0.77 per diluted share, down from $0.80 per share a year ago but in line with the $0.77 average estimate from analysts polled by Capital IQ. Net revenue rose to $1.01 billion from $976.2 million a year ago, lagging the $1.05 billion consensus. The company said that management's guidance for fiscal 2018 includes net sales increasing by a high-single-digit percentage over the prior year both as reported and on a constant-exchange-rate basis. Additionally, net earnings are seen in a range of $4.65 - $4.80 per diluted share, which is unchanged from a previous guidance but is below the $4.83 average analyst forecast for the full year.

Winners and Losers


The Select Financial Sector SPDRs (XLF) was inactive in pre-market trade. Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X shares (FAS) was up more than 1% while its bearish counterpart Direxion Daily Financial Bear 3X shares (FAZ) was down 0.6%.

Royal Bank of Canada (RY) reported fiscal Q4 earnings of CAD2.20 per share, up from CAD1.88 in the same period a year ago and topping the estimate of CAD2.15 from analysts. For the quarter ended Oct. 31 total revenue of CAD10.67 billion was up from CAD10.52 billion in the same period a year ago and was shy of the Street projection of CAD11.1 billion. The bank increased its quarterly common share dividend to $0.98 per share from $0.94 in the prior quarter. The dividend is payable Feb. 22 to shareholders as of Jan. 24.


Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK) was up 1.2% and other tech funds iShares Dow Jones US Technology ETF (IYW) and iShares S&P North American Technology ETF (IGM) were inactive.

Among semiconductor ETFs, SPDR S&P Semiconductor (XSD) and Semiconductor Sector Index Fund (SOXX) were also flat.

Electronics For Imaging (EFII) said it has priced a private offering of $135 million 2.25% convertible senior notes due 2023. Initial buyers have a 30-day option to buy up to an additional $15 million notes. Net proceeds will be used to buy back common shares from the buyers of the notes, as well as for general corporate purposes.


Dow Jones US Energy Fund (IYE) and Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) were quiet in pre-market trade.

Capital Product Partners L.P (CPLP) and DSS Holdings L.P., a privately held company that owns and operates medium-range product and Suezmax crude tankers, said they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Capital Product Partners will spin off its crude and product tanker business into a separate publicly listed company, which will merge with DSS' businesses and operations in a share-for-share transaction. The new company, to be called Diamond S Shipping Inc. The transaction is valued on an NAV-to-NAV basis with Capital Product Partners receiving $23 million in consideration in the form of 3% incremental ownership in Diamond S Shipping. The transaction results in CPLP unitholders initially owning 33% of the new company and DSS equity owners initially owning 67%. CPLP unitholders also will continue to own their CPLP units. Capital Product Partners intends to effect a reverse unit split promptly after the closing of the transaction.


Crude was down 0.7%. United States Oil Fund ( USO ) was down 0.2%. Natural gas was up 1.9% while United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) was up 3.4%.

Gold was up 0.02%. SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) was down 0.1%. Silver was down 0.3%, while iShares Silver Trust (SLV) was up 0.8%.

Health Care

Health Care SPDR (XLV) was up 0.2% and other health care funds including Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT) and iShares Dow Jones U.S. Healthcare (IYH) were quiet. Biotechnology fund iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB) was up 0.7%.

Moleculin Biotech (MBRX) rose more than 15% after the clinical stage pharmaceutical company reported that data from an independent test in animal models confirmed, as previously believed, that its immuno-stimulating STAT3 inhibitor achieves disproportionately high accumulation in the pancreas. The company is now preparing the data necessary for an Investigational New Drug (IND) application with the US Food and Drug Administration, which is targeted to be filed in 2019.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Copyright (C) 2016 MTNewswires.com. All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

This article appears in: Investing , ETFs
Referenced Symbols: EEM , SPY , GDX , USO , QQQ

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