(RTTNews.com) - After closing mixed for two straight sessions, stocks are likely to come under pressure in early trading on Tuesday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a sharply lower open for the markets, with the Dow futures down by 380 points.
Substantial weakness in the overseas markets is likely to weigh on Wall Street amid worries about global economic growth and mounting geopolitical tensions.
A negative reaction to quarterly results from some big-name companies is also likely to contribute to initial weakness.
Shares of 3M Co. (MMM) are moving sharply lower in pre-market trading after the diversified manufacturer reported weaker than expected third quarter results and cut its full-year guidance.
Heavy equipment maker Caterpillar ( CAT ) is also seeing notable pre-market weakness despite reporting third quarter results that exceeded analyst estimates. The company also reaffirmed its full-year guidance.
On the other hand, fast food giant McDonald's (MCD) may move to the upside after reporting third quarter earnings and revenues that beat expectations.
Overall trading activity may remain somewhat subdued, however, as another light day on the U.S. economic front may keep some traders on the sidelines.
Traders may look ahead to reports on new home sales and durable goods orders as well as the Federal Reserve's Beige Book, which may shed additional light on the outlook for interest rates.
Stocks fluctuated over the course of the trading session on Monday after failing to sustain an initial move to the upside. The major averages showed a lack of direction before closing on opposite sides of the unchanged line for the second consecutive session.
While the Nasdaq rose 19.60 points or 0.3 percent to 7,468.63, the Dow slid 126.93 points or 0.5 percent to 25,317.41 and the S&P 500 fell 11.90 points or 0.4 percent to 2,755.88.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved sharply lower during trading on Tuesday. Japan'sNikkei 225 Index tumbled by 2.7 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index plummeted by 3.1 percent.
The major European markets have also come under pressure on the day. While the German DAX Index has plunged by 1.8 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the U.K.'sFTSE 100 Index are both down by 1 percent.
In commodities trading, crude oil futures are slumping $1.15 to $68.21 barrel after inching up $0.05 to $69.17 a barrel on Monday. Meanwhile, after slipping $0.140 to $1,228.70 ounce in the previous session, gold futures are jumping $16.40 to $1,241 an ounce.
On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 112.18 yen compared to the 112.82 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Monday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.1470 compared to yesterday's $1.1464.
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