ETF Preview: ETFs, Futures Set to Open Lower as Wall Street Frets Over Government Shutdown, China Economic Slowdown

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

SPDR S&P 500 ( SPY ): -0.8%

iShares MSCI Emerging Index Fund ( EEM ): -1.3%

SPDR Select Sector Fund - Financial ( XLF ): -0.9%

iShares MSCI EAFE ETF ( EFA ): -0.8%

Alerian MLP ETF ( AMLP ): -1.1%

Broad Market Indicators

Broad-market exchange-traded funds, including IWM and IVV were lower. Actively traded PowerShares QQQ (QQQ) was down 0.9%.

US stock futures were pointing to a lower open, with Dow futures declining more than 200 points as investors continued to worry over the ongoing government shutdown -- now considered the longest ever in US history.

With Democrats and Republicans failing to arrive at a compromise over funding the border wall, re-opening of the US government seems unlikely anytime soon.

Meanwhile, fears for a slowdown in global economic growth were also weighing on market sentiment, following the report that China's December exports and imports decreased. December imports were down 7.6% year-over-year , while exports declined 4.4% versus the prior year -- both missing estimates. Data also showed that China's trade surplus in December of $57.06 billion was larger than expected.

Power Play: Financial

The Select Financial Sector SPDRs ( XLF ) was down 0.9%. Direxion Daily Financial Bull 3X shares (FAS) was down 1.5% and its bearish counterpart Direxion Daily Financial Bear 3X Shares (FAZ) was up 3.1% in pre-market trade.

Citigroup (C ) fell more than 1% after i t report ed higher-than-expected adjusted earnings but a disappointing drop in revenue for Q4. Adjusted EPS increased 26% to $1.61 in the December quarter, from $1.28 a year earlier. That surpassed the $1.55 average estimate of analysts surveyed by Capital IQ. Q4 revenue decreased to $17.12 billion from $17.50 billion. Analysts had predicted revenue to increase to $17.57 billion.

Winners and Losers


Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK) was down 1% while 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 flat.

Amazon's (AMZN) Web Services business was among the investors in a $30 million Series B funding round by Wiliot, an Israeli semiconductor startup. Amazon Web Services was joined by Avery Dennison and Samsung. The funding transaction follows Wiliot's launch of the first-ever sticker-sized Bluetooth sensor tag incorporating an ARM processor powered solely by scavenging energy from ambient radio frequencies. AMZN shares were down 1.5%.


Dow Jones US Energy Fund (IYE) was flat and Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) was down 0.7% in pre-market trade.

Pacific Gas & Electric Co (PCG) will file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in a bid to resolve its liabilities from wildfires in northern California in 2017 and 2018. The company said its committed to making investments in systems safety and working with regulators, lawmakers and other stakeholders to provide natural gas and electricity in a market that "continues to be challenged by climate change." PG&E will file petitions to reorganize on or about Jan. 29, after the required 15-day notice period expires.


Crude was down 1.0%. United States Oil Fund (USO) was down 1.5%. Natural gas was up 9.6% while the United States Natural Gas Fund (UNG) was up 6.9%.

Gold was up 0.2%. SPDR Gold Trust (GLD) was up 0.5%. Silver was up 0.1%, while iShares Silver Trust (SLV) was up 0.1%.


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.

Lululemon Athletica (LULU) rose more than 3% after it increased fiscal Q4 earnings guidance to a range of $1.72 to $1.74 from a prior range of $1.64 to $1.67. The new guidance exceeds the Street estimate of $1.70. For the quarter ended Feb. 3, the company increased revenue guidance to a range of $1.14 billion to $1.15 billion from a prior range of $1.12 billion to $1.13 billion. The new guidance tops the Street projection of $1.13 billion. The company said the revisions are based on a Q4 comparable sales increase in the high-single to low-double digits on a constant dollar basis.

Health Care

Health Care SPDR (XLV) and other health care funds including Vanguard Health Care ETF (VHT) and iShares Dow Jones U.S. Healthcare (IYH) were flat in pre-market trade. Biotechnology fund iShares NASDAQ Biotechnology Index (IBB) was also quiet.

ASLAN Pharmaceuticals (ASLN) fell more than 23% after it said that its recently completed phase 2 clinical study of varlitinib as a first-line therapy in HER1/HER2 co-expressing advanced or metastatic gastric cancer patients did not meet the primary endpoint of significant reductions in tumor size after 12 weeks of treatment. The company said that based on independent central review, patients treated with varlitinib plus mFOLFOX6 had an average tumor shrinkage of 22% after 12 weeks compared to 12.5% for patients treated with mFOLFOX6 alone. This difference did not reach statistical significance. Upon review of 17 progression free survival (PFS) events to date, there was a trend towards an improvement in PFS in patients treated with varlitinib. Overall patient characteristics were well-balanced between the two arms with the exception of baseline ECOG status. The proportion of patients with the best performance status (ECOG of 0) was substantially higher in the control arm (46.2%) than in the varlitinib arm (19.2%).

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 All rights reserved. Unauthorized reproduction is strictly prohibited.

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

In This Story


Other Topics


Latest Markets Videos