Wall St set for weak open after report dents trade optimism


By Arjun Panchadar

Nov 18 (Reuters) - Wall Street's main indexes were set for a subdued open on Monday after a report stoked fresh fears over the possibility of a U.S.-China trade deal.

The mood in Beijing about a deal was pessimistic due to President Donald Trump's reluctance to roll back tariffs, which China believed the United States had agreed to, CNBC reported, citing a government source.

Futures were higher ahead of the report after Xinhua over the weekend said that Washington and Beijing had held "constructive" talks.

"This is a market that's going to live or die by the tone around trade," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities in New York.

"There is some good news that's baked into this market, so when we get bad news this market's going to roll over."

Hopes of a resolution to the 16-month trade dispute that has roiled financial markets and throttled global growth have powered Wall Street's three indexes to multiple record highs this month.

Also helping sentiment earlier was an unexpected cut by China to a closely watched lending rate for the first time in more than four years, as the central bank looks to counter a slowdown.

At 8:52 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis 1YMcv1 were up 12 points, or 0.04%. S&P 500 e-minis EScv1 were down 1 points, or 0.03% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis NQcv1 were down 2.75 points, or 0.03%.

Attention this week turns to minutes from the Federal Reserve's latest policy meeting, where the central bank cut interest rates for the third time this year. The minutes are due to be released on Wednesday.

Also on the radar are results from U.S. retailers such as Home Depot Inc HD.N, Kohl's Corp KSS.N and Target Corp TGT.N following a stronger-than-expected third-quarter earnings season so far that has aided the recent rally.

Shares of HP Inc HPQ.N fell 1% after the company rebuffed a $33.5 billion offer from Xerox Corp XRX.N and said it was open to exploring a bid for the latter. Xerox dropped 1.9%.

Splunk Inc SPLK.O gained 2.7% after Morgan Stanley upgraded the data analytics software maker's stock to "overweight" from "equal-weight".

T-Mobile US Inc TMUS.O slipped about 2% after the wireless carrier said Chief Executive Officer John Legere will step down next year.

(Reporting by Arjun Panchadar and Agamoni Ghosh in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)

((Arjun.Panchadar@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1-646-223-8780; outside U.S. +918067492767;))

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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