Here are five things you must know for Thursday, Aug. 2:
1. -- Stocks Slide as U.S. Threatens Higher Tariffs on China
U.S. stock futures traded lower on Thursday, Aug. 2, and shares in Europe and Asia fell, sparked by a tougher stance on tariffs from the White House that rattled investors in China, where the Shanghai Composite Index dropped 2%.
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said late Wednesday, Aug. 1, that the U.S. government would look to boost tariffs on $200 billion worth of China-made goods to 25% -from an initial proposal of 10% - as informal talks between Washington and Beijing failed failed to bridge the gap in what each consider to be a fair agreement on trade.
Contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average
U.S. stocks on Wednesday ended mixed after the Federal Reserve held interest rates steady but said the economy remains strong and inflation tame, laying the groundwork for additional rate hikes later this year.
As for Thursday in the U.S., the economic calendar includes weekly Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m. ET, and Factory Orders for June at 10 a.m.
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2. -- Tesla Sees Profits Ahead
Shares of Tesla Inc. (TSLA) jumped 7.6% after the electric vehicle company reported a wider-than-expected second-quarter loss but CEO Elon Musk reiterated Tesla would it would turn a profit in the third quarter.
Tesla posted an adjusted loss of $3.06 a share, wider than Wall Street estimates that called for a loss of $2.92 a share. Revenue of $4 billion, however, topped forecasts of $3.92 billion.
The company also reported that it has a cash pile of $2.2 billion, which may alleviate investor concerns about the financial stability of the company. In its press release, Tesla set a goal of producing 6,000 vehicles a week by late August.
Tesla further noted that "a total vehicle output of 7,000 vehicles per week, or 350,000 per year, should enable Tesla to become sustainably profitable for the first time in our history - and we expect to grow our production rate further" in the third quarter.
- Tesla Reports Wider-Than-Expected Loss, Beats on Revenue
- Tesla Earnings Were a Mess -- 3 Reasons to Stay Bearish on the Stock
While Tesla's earnings were far from clean, CEO Musk managed to do just enough to jump-start the bullish thesis on the stock that had all but died in recent months, according to TheStreet's Brian Sozzi.
Among other things, Musk promised (again) Tesla would be profitable each future quarter. He did leave himself an out should the economy weaken from strong second-quarter growth rates. The CEO also reiterated he doesn't expect an equity capital raise, and again suggested the company's fully autonomous driving capabilities were ready to go.
- How Elon Musk Just Added Billions in Market Cap to Tesla Overnight
- Tesla Jumps After Forecasting Second-Half Profits: 8 Key Takeaways
3. -- DowDuPont Highlights Thursday's Earnings Calendar
Earnings are expected Thursday from DowDuPont Inc. (DWDP) , Activision Blizzard Inc. (ATVI) , Aetna Inc. (AET) , AMC Networks Inc. (AMCX) , Blue Apron Holdings Inc. (APRN) , CBS Corp. (CBS) , Cigna Corp. (CI) , Clorox Co. (CLX) , GoPro Inc. (GPRO) , Kellogg Co. (K) , MGM Resorts International (MGM) , Noble Corp. (NE) , Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (RCL) , Shake Shack Inc. (SHAK) , Take-Two Interactive Inc. (TTWO) , Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (TEVA) , Yum! Brands Inc. (YUM) and Wayfair Inc. (W) .
4. -- Starbucks in China Partnership With Alibaba
Looking to rev up slowing sales growth in China, Starbucks Corp.. (SBUX) confirmed it was entering a partnership with Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (BABA) for a delivery business in its second-largest market.
"I consider this strategic partnership to be one that ... will just be rocket fuel for Starbucks' growth and continued expansion in China," Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson told reporters in Shanghai.
Starbucks said delivery services would begin in September from 150 Starbucks stores in Beijing and Shanghai. The company said it plans to expand to more than 2,000 stores across 30 Chinese cities by the end of the year.
5. -- Sonos IPO Is Priced Below Range
The initial public offering for smart speaker maker Sonos Inc. was priced at $15 a share below the expected range of $17 to $19 a share.
At the IPO price, Sonos was valued at about $1.5 billion.
Shares are expected to begin trading Thursday on the Nasdaq under symbol " (SONO) ."