Futures pause after rally, JPMorgan results draw cheer
(Reuters) - U.S. stock index futures were flat to slightly lower on Tuesday, as investors took a breather following a record rally, even as JPMorgan's quarterly results set a positive tone for big bank earnings.
The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq indexes set new all-time highs on Monday, helped by bets that the expected Phase 1 U.S.-China trade deal will spur a rebound in global growth and on easing Middle East tensions.
JPMorgan Chase & Co <JPM.N>, the largest U.S. bank by assets, rose 1.7% in pre-market trading after its fourth-quarter profit beat Wall Street estimates, driven by strength in its trading business and higher underwriting fees.
Citigroup Inc <C.N> and Wells Fargo & Co <WFC.N>, also set to report results before market open, rose about 0.8% each.
Analysts expect profits at S&P 500 companies to drop 0.7% for the second consecutive quarter, according to Refinitiv IBES data, largely due to weakness in earnings for energy and industrial companies that have been hit by a prolonged trade war.
China has pledged to buy nearly an additional $80 billion of manufactured goods from the United States over the next two years, plus over $50 billion more in energy supplies, Reuters reported, citing a source briefed on the trade deal expected to be signed on Wednesday.
As the earnings season starts in earnest, investors are hopeful that a resolution to the Sino-U.S. trade war would encourage companies to come up with stronger forecasts.
Delta Air Lines Inc <DAL.N> jumped 4.4% after reporting a better-than-expected quarterly profit, boosted by customers gained from rival airlines' 737 MAX cancellations.
High-flying stocks Apple Inc <APPL.O>, Amazon.com Inc <AMZN.O>, Microsoft Corp <MSFT.O> and Facebook Inc <FB.O> were all marginally lower after taking the markets to record levels.
Videogame retailer GameStop Corp <GME.N> dropped 8.1% after cutting its fiscal 2019 outlook for profit and same-store sales, as customers delayed console purchases ahead of new launches.
At 07:18 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis <1YMcv1> were up 4 points, or 0.01%. S&P 500 e-minis <EScv1> were down 2.75 points, or 0.08% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis <NQcv1> were down 13 points, or 0.14%.
The U.S. Labor Department is expected to release consumer price data at 8:30 a.m. ET, which is likely to remain unchanged at 0.3% in December. Core CPI is also likely to remain unchanged at 0.2% in December.
(Reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)
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