US STOCKS-Futures dip ahead of fresh U.S.-China trade talks

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* Futures down: Dow 0.28 pct, S&P 0.32 pct, Nasdaq 0.29 pct

By Shreyashi Sanyal

Trade negotiations between the world's two largest economieswill resume in Washington later in the day and will be followedby higher-level talks on Thursday. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N20E02U

Hopes that the two countries will hammer out a deal to endtheir protracted trade war have sparked a rally in U.S. stocks,with the S&P 500 .SPX and the Nasdaq .IXIC logging theirbest week in a month on Friday.

Both sides have said progress has been made, but few detailshave emerged from the talks so far.

Tariff-vulnerable industrial companies such as Boeing CoBA.N dropped 0.3 percent and Caterpillar IncCAT.N 0.1percent in premarket trading.

The World Trade Organization said its quarterly outlookindicator of world merchandise trade slumped to its lowestreading in nine years, putting policymakers on guard for asharper slowdown if trade tensions continue. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL5N20E2LU

In a bright spot, shares of retailer Walmart IncWMT.N jumped 4.6 percent after reporting an estimate-beating jump inholiday quarter comparable sales, which grew for the 18thconsecutive quarter. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL3N20E21J

Walmart's results follow a shockingly weak report from theU.S. Commerce Department last week that showed U.S. retail salesrecorded their biggest drop in more than nine years forDecember, stoking fears of an economic slowdown. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2081MC

At 7:19 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis 1YMc1 were down 72 points, or0.28 percent. S&P 500 e-minis ESc1 were down 9 points, or 0.32percent and Nasdaq 100 e-minis NQc1 were down 20.5 points, or0.29 percent.

Advance Auto Parts IncAAP.N dropped 2.9 percent after thecompany reported quarterly revenue in line with Wall Streetestimates. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nASB01853

Shares of weight management services provider WeightWatchers International IncWTW.O slid 5 percent after J.P.Morgan downgraded the stock. urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL3N20E370

With nearly 80 percent of S&P 500 companies having reportedearnings reports so far, analysts now see a profit increase forthe group of 16.2 percent for the fourth quarter, according toRefinitiv data.

However, the current quarter does not look all that upbeat,with earnings expected to fall by 0.5 percent, their firstyear-on-year decline since mid-2016. (Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal and Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru;Editing by Anil D'Silva) ((Shreyashi.Sanyal@thomsonreuters.com; +1 646 223 8780 ;Reuters Messaging:Shreyashi.Sanyal.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

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

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