Here are five things you must know for Monday, March 25:
1. -- Stocks Slump on U.S. Recession Fears
U.S. stock futures fell on Monday and global stocks slumped as last week's sharp selloff continued amid concerns over the strength of the world economy and the first inversion of the U.S. Treasury yield curve in more than a decade.
Yields on 3-month U.S. Treasury bills continued to trade higher than those on 10-year notes in overnight markets, keeping the yield curve in a so-called inverted position, a condition that has signaled nearly every U.S. recession for the past 60 years, according to Federal Reserve studies.
The bond market moves were a reaction to data last week that showed U.S. manufacturing activity in March eased to the lowest level in nearly two years while a similar reading in Germany, Europe's biggest economy, fell to the lowest level in more than six years.
Chicago Fed President Charles Evans, however, told an audience in Hong Kong that the curve's sharp was more a reflection of "a secular decline in long-term interest rates" rather than a signal of impending recession, a view that's shared among many Wall Street analysts.
"Some of this is structural, having to do with lower trend growth, lower real interest rates," Evans said. "I think, in that environment, it's probably more natural that yield curves are somewhat flatter than they have been historically."
Contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 52 points, futures for the S&P 500 were down 6.75 points, and Nasdaq futures fell 39 points. The Dow sank 460 points, or 1.8%, on Friday amid the fresh signs of slowing global economic growth.
The economic calendar in the U.S. Monday includes the Chicago Fed National Activity Index for February at 8:30 a.m. ET, and the Dallas Fed Manufacturing Survey for March at 10:30 a.m.
Earnings reports are expected Monday from Winnebago Industries (WGO - Get Report) and Red Hat (RHT - Get Report) , which is set to close a deal to be acquired by International Business Machines (IBM - Get Report) later this year.
2. -- Mueller Report Finds No Evidence Trump Campaign Conspired With Russia
The U.S. attorney general released the main findings of the long-awaited special counsel report into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, and William Barr said in his summary there was no proof that Donald Trump or his campaign conspired with Russian forces to swing the election, adding that "while this report does not conclude that the President committed a crime, it also does not exonerate him."
Barr also said there wasn't enough evidence to pursue an obstruction of justice charge against Trump, even though the report from Special Counsel Robert Mueller only stated that such a conclusion wasn't possible to make, a decision many suggested would put the onus on Congress to demand such a formal accusation.
Barr also said the report recommended no more indictments and that no secret sealed indictments remained.
The findings appeared to please Trump - who repeatedly has called the special counsel's investigation a "witch hunt."
"No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!" is how Trump responded over Twitter to the report.
No Collusion, No Obstruction, Complete and Total EXONERATION. KEEP AMERICA GREAT!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 24, 2019
3. -- Apple Set to Unveil Subscription Video Service
TheStreet will be conducting a live blog breaking down Apple's event, which begins at 1 p.m. ET. Please check TheStreet's home page then for more details.
Back in August 2018, Apple became the first company to exceed a $1 trillion market cap, though it dipped significantly below that in the fall's tech swoon, before recovering to just over $900 billion as of Friday. So will Apple's new services offering help push Apple's valuation back to new heights?
Many analysts were feeling optimistic ahead of the announcement, with several jacking up their price targets to between $215 and $225 a share. Apple shares rose 2.7% during the week on the backs of those upgrades, ending the week at $191.18.
It's worth noting that Apple product reveals, at least where hardware announcements are concerned, have seemingly lost some of their power to move the stock dramatically. For instance, Apple's 2017 reveal of the iPhone X produced a move of -0.9% three days after the announcement, which was the worst stock market response to a new iPhone, according to data from IG Group.
But it's a different ballgame now, with Apple forging a new path in services and away from its iPhone-centric revenue regime. Apple has sought to shift focus away from iPhone unit sales and toward its installed base of 1.4 billion Apple devices worldwide.
According to CFRA Research's Angelo Zino, much of the market's reaction likely will be tied to the library of third-party content available - from networks like Starz or Showtime - and to the price of Apple's subscription video service. In a research note last week, Zino suggested that Apple may undercut competitors like Netflix (NFLX - Get Report) on price.
4. -- Uber to Buy Middle East Rival Careem - Report
Uber Technologies could announce a $3.1 billion cash-and-share deal to acquire its Dubai-based rival Careem Networks FZ as early as this week, Bloomberg reported, citing people with knowledge of the matter.
Shareholders in Careem, whose backers include Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal's investment firm and Japanese e-commerce company Rakuten, have been asked to agree to the terms of the transaction by Monday evening and a deal could be announced as soon as Tuesday, the people told Bloomberg.
The acquisition would come as Uber is expected to publicly file for its initial public offering in April, which could value the company at as much as $120 billion, likely the biggest IPO of the year.
5. -- Thermo Fisher to Buy Brammer Bio for $1.7 Billion
Brammer Bio, owned by private-equity firm Ampersand Capital Partners, is a leader in viral vector manufacturing for gene and cell therapies. It has nearly 600 employees at primary locations in Massachusetts and Florida.
Brammer Bio is on track for revenue of $250 million in 2019 and expects to continue to exceed the projected market growth rate of 25% over the mid-term, Thermo Fisher said, adding it expects the business to be accretive to adjusted earnings by 10 cents a share in the first full year of ownership.
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