Fleeting tariff relief; Germany’s GDP; CBS-Viacom
1. No respite: Relief from the Trump administration’s announcement that some tariffs on consumer goods exported from China will be delayed until December may have been short lived.
US stock futures point lower Wednesday following weak economic data out of Germany and China. The Dow could open down 200 points, or 0.8% lower. The Nasdaq could drop 0.9% and the S&P 500 could fall 0.8%.
Stocks in Asia finished higher, helped along by the US rally during the previous session. Japan’s Nikkei rose 1%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 0.1% after two days of protests disrupted flights at the city’s airport.
2. Germany and China: Investor jitters have a lot to do with the fact that German’s economy is shrinking while pressure builds in China.
Germany said Wednesday that GDP for the three months ended June contracted 0.1% compared to the previous quarter, in line with analyst expectations. That’s down from 0.4% growth in the first three months of the year.
The world’s fourth largest economy, and Europe’s biggest, has been hit by what analysts describe as a “perfect storm” of negative factors, including the trade war, weak global auto sales and fears of a disorderly Brexit.
China, meanwhile, saw industrial production grow just 4.8% in July, its weakest rate in 17 years. Retail sales from July also came in worse than expected.
3. CBS-Viacom deal: CBS and Viacom are merging, putting two of the biggest brands in entertainment back under one corporate banner.
The deal will create a company with more than $28 billion in revenue. Its businesses include CBS’ broadcast network, the movie studio Paramount and cable networks like Showtime, MTV, Nickelodeon, BET and Comedy Central.
The two companies used to be one, but split in 2006. Shari Redstone, the president of CBS parent company National Amusements, has been trying for years orchestrate a reunion.
Shares of CBS are down 2% in premarket trading, while Viacom stock is off 0.4%.
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5. Coming this week:
Wednesday — China retail sales; Germany and Europe GDP; UK inflation; Luckin Coffee, Macy’s and Canopy Growth earnings
Thursday — US retail sales; Alibaba, JCPenney, Walmart and NVIDIA earnings
Friday — US housing starts and building permits