US stock futures fall as chipmakers slide and China data disappoints



U.S. stock futures were lower on Friday as investors digested a drop in semiconductor shares alongside weak data out of China.

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures fell 50 points, indicating a loss of 54 points at the open. S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures also fell.

Chipmakers fell broadly after weak quarterly results from Broadcom. The VanEck Vectors Semiconductor ETF (SMH) fell more than 3% in the premarket, led by a 9.6% plunge on Broadcom. The chipmaker posted weaker-than-expected revenue for the previous quarter and cut its guidance for 2019, citing “broad-based” demand weakness and the U.S. crackdown on Huawei. 

Market players are closely watching geopolitical events, with attacks on oil tankers in the Middle East giving oil prices a boost. Brent crude climbed 0.4% to $61.57 a barrel, while WTI crude was up 0.1% at $52.33.

The Trump administration on Thursday placed the blame squarely on Iran, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo saying Tehran “wants our successful maximum pressure campaign lifted.”

Iran hit back at Washington, denying Pompeo’s claims. Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said on Twitter that the U.S. “immediately jumped to make allegations against Iran—/wo a shred of factual or circumstantial evidence.”

Meanwhile, China’s industrial output growth slowed to a more than 17-year low of 5% in May, well below expectations, in the latest sign of weakening demand in the world’s second-largest economy as the United States ramps up trade pressure.

U.S. data also looms, with traders looking out for upcoming retail sales and industrial production data for May, as well as the consumer sentiment index for June.

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