Here are five things you must know for Friday, Aug. 31:
1. -- Stocks Lower as Trump Backs $200 Billion in China Tariffs
U.S. stock futures edged lower on Friday, Aug. 31, and global stocks retreated for a second consecutive session as investors reacted to aggressive comments on trade and tariffs from Donald Trump.
In an interview with Bloomberg Television, Trump reiterated his threat to pull the U.S. out of the World Trade Organization, and said he was ready to slap his administration's planned tariffs on $200 billion worth of China-made goods if officials in Beijing don't accelerate concessions in the stalled trade talks. He also dismissed a reported offer from the European Union to cut tariffs on U.S. auto imports to zero, saying the bloc was "almost as bad as China, just smaller."
Trump's comments were made just hours ahead of a self-imposed deadline to wrap up three-way trade talks with Canada and Mexico as part of an overhaul of the current NAFTA arrangement.
Contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average
The economic calendar in the U.S. on Friday includes the Chicago PMI for August at 9:45 a.m. ET, and Consumer Sentiment for August at 10 a.m.
Big Lots Inc. (BIG) is expected to report earnings on Friday.
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2. -- Coca-Cola to Buy Costa Coffee
Coca-Cola Co (KO) said Friday it will buy the Costa brand of coffee stores, the world's second largest behind Starbucks Corp. (SBUX) , for around $5 billion from U.K. pub and hotel operator Whitbread PLC (WTBDY) .
The deal, which will see Coke pay around 16.4 times Costa's full-year operating earnings, inferring an enterprise value of £3.9 billion ($5 billion) has been fully approved by the Whitbread board. It remain subject to the agreement of the company's shareholders, who are set to receive a "significant" portion of the cash from the deal. One of those shareholders, activist investor Elliot Management, had been pushing for a demerger of the Costa business from Whitbread's core hotel operations.
"Costa gives Coca-Cola new capabilities and expertise in coffee, and our system can create opportunities to grow the Costa brand worldwide," said Coca-Cola President James Quincey. "Hot beverages is one of the few remaining segments of the total beverage landscape where Coca-Cola does not have a global brand. Costa gives us access to this market through a strong coffee platform."
3. -- BlackRock Voted to Replace Musk as Tesla Chairman
BlackRock-managed funds voted for a measure requiring that the chairman be an independent director, Reuters reported, citing a BlackRock filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The proposal, which was defeated, wouldn't have affected Musk's standing as Tesla's CEO, Reuters noted.
Investors have grown concerned over Musk's mindset and the business outlook for his electric vehicle company.
4. -- Third Point Seeks to Challenge Campbell Soup's Board
Third Point LLC, the activist fund run by Daniel Loeb, has been speaking to consumer industry executives as it seeks to fill a slate of nominees to challenge Campbell Soup Co.'s (CPB) board, Reuters reported, citing people familiar with the matter.
Third Point has been pushing for a sale of the soups maker and isn't not convinced the company has adequately explored that option, the sources said.
Campbell Soup said Thursday it plans to sell two businesses, Campbell International and Campbell Fresh. The proceeds would be used to pay down debt and deleverage the balance sheet, and refocus the company on its North America business.
Some on Wall Street, however, are questioning the company's restructuring plan.
5. -- Lululemon Jumps as Same-Store Sales Soar 20%
Lululemon Athletica Inc. (LULU) jumped 10.3% in premarket trading on Friday after the athletic apparel retailer posted second-quarter earnings and sales that beat analysts' expectations.
Same-store sales in the quarter soared 20%, and e-commerce sales rose nearly 50%.
The company also raised its profit and sales outlook for the year.