Wednesday October 25th


Futures point to a mixed open as earnings deluge continues

U.S. stock index futures are expected to begin Wednesday's trade on a relatively mixed note, as investors pause for breath amid an extremely busy week for corporate earnings. Dow Jones industrial average futures slipped 25 points, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures fell 4.25 points and 11.25 points, respectively. The Dow Jones industrial average ticked sharply higher in the previous session, closing up 167.8 points following positive quarterly results from the likes of Caterpillar and 3M. Corporate earnings continue to come in thick and fast today, with a slew of major brands set to publish their latest financial figures. Visa, Coca-Cola, Sirius XM and Anthem are just a few of the companies that reported before the bell Wednesday. Dow-component Boeing also reported quarterly results. Amgen, F5 Networks, Tractor Supply, Buffalo Wild Wings, Morningstar and many more are also set to report earnings after the bell. Aside from the latest batch of corporate earnings, a number of data releases are set to keep investors talking Wednesday. Durable goods orders rose 2.2 percent in September, more than the expected increase of 1 percent. The Federal Housing Finance Agency's house price index are due out at 9 a.m. ET. New homes sales data are scheduled to be published at 10 a.m. ET. In politics, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is meeting with the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi, with the event aimed at looking to strengthen strategic and economic ties, Reuters reported. Elsewhere, tax reform is still expected to lurk at the back of investors' minds. Last week, the Senate passed a budget proposal that allowed Republicans to move closer to eventually passing tax reform — a measure that was approved by a vote of 51-49. Meanwhile, a Capitol Hill source told CNBC Tuesday that House Republicans aim to introduce their tax bill at the start of November. Aside from tax reform, the future of the U.S. Federal Reserve's leadership will be on the agenda, as Wall Street awaits news as to who will take on the position of Fed chair in early 2018. At present, five people have been named as potential candidates, including current Fed Chair Janet Yellen. Looking to the energy market, oil prices were under slight pressure in early trade, with U.S. crude trading around $52.23 at 8:34 a.m. ET. Overseas, European stocks were mixed during its morning trade, while markets in Asia finished mostly in the black. The Nikkei 225 lose 97.55 points, or 0.45 percent, to close at 21,707.62. A late sell-off in the last hour of trade brought an end to the benchmark index's 16-day winning streak notched on Tuesday. Across the Korean Strait, the Kospi extended gains, rising 0.08 percent to close at 2,492.50 as markets digested the release of quarterly earnings. The index had set a record high in the last session on expectations for strong corporate earnings. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index rose 0.41 percent by 3:19 p.m. HK/SIN and mainland markets were slightly firmer: The Shanghai Composite added 0.3 percent to close at 3,398.3041 and the Shenzhen Composite rose 0.779 percent to end at 2,025.3169. Gold prices edged lower on Wednesday, pressured by stronger equities and a firmer dollar amid speculation over who will be the next U.S. Federal Reserve chief. Spot gold was down 0.2 percent at $1,273.70 an ounce by 0633 GMT and U.S. gold futures for December delivery were 0.2 percent lower at $1,275.20 per ounce.