Here are five things you must know for Tuesday, Sept. 17:
1. -- Stock Futures Down Slightly as Oil Prices Slip
U.S. stock futures declined slightly Tuesday and oil prices fall following one of the biggest single-day price jumps on record, as investors adopted a cautious stance ahead of the Federal Reserve's two-day rate-setting meeting and the start of formal U.S.-China trade talks.
Brent crude and West Texas Intermediate crude were lower as Donald Trump dialed back some of his early rhetoric regarding a U.S. military response to the weekend's drone attacks on two Saudi oil fields, which have been linked to the Iranian government.
"We have a lot of options but I'm not looking at options right now. We want to find definitively who did this," he said. Trump also said, "I'm somebody that would like not to have war."
Contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 45 points, futures for the S&P 500 dipped 3.75 points, and Nasdaq futures were down 14.50 points.
The economic calendar in the U.S. Tuesday includes the first day of the two-day Federal Open Market Committee meeting, at which the Federal Reserve's policy-making body is expected to announce it has cut interest rates by a quarter-point for the second time this year. The Fed's benchmark rate is now at 2% to 2.25%. The announcement from the FOMC is expected at 2 p.m. on Wednesday.
Fed-watchers will be keying in on what Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell has to say at his press conference Wednesday about further easing. Powell likely will reiterate that the central bank will act as appropriate to sustain the expansion of the U.S. economy, especially in light of the intensifying, 14-month trade war between the U.S. and China.
Market sentiment remains affected by the uncertainty on trade as negotiators from Washington and Beijing prepare to meet later this week for talks that will pave the way toward higher-level negotiations in October.
2. -- FedEx and Adobe Report Earnings Tuesday
3. -- Approval Process for Boeing's 737 MAX Jets to Be Criticized - Report
Boeing (BA - Get Report) traded flat in premarket trading Tuesday at $378.91 after the world's biggest planemaker lifted its forecast for aircraft demand in China, the world's biggest market, but questions remained over the return of its troubled 737 MAX jet.
Boeing said Tuesday that China would need just under 8,100 new planes for its expanding fleet between now and 2038, an estimate that would bring around $1.3 trillion in sales at current list prices for both the company and its main European rival Airbus (EADSY) . A further $1.6 trillion in commercial services for China's fleet also will be required, Boeing said.
"An expanding middle class, significant investment in infrastructure, and advanced technologies that make airplanes more capable and efficient, continue to drive tremendous demand for air travel," said Boeing's vice president of commercial marketing, Randy Tinseth.
The stock was held down by a report from The Wall Street Journal that said a panel of international air-safety regulators is finishing a report expected to criticize the Federal Aviation Administration's approval process for Boeing's 737 MAX jets, which remain grounded following two deadly crashes in March 2019 and November 2018 that killed 346 passengers.
As part of roughly a dozen findings, government and industry officials told the Journal, the task force is poised to call out the FAA for what it describes as a lack of clarity and transparency in the way the agency delegated authority to the planemaker to assess the safety of certain flight-control features. Essential design changes, therefore, didn't receive adequate FAA attention, the people told the Journal.
4. -- WeWork Expected to Postpone Its IPO
The We Co., parent of office space rental company WeWork, is expected to delay its initial public offering, The Wall Street Journal reported.
WeWork is expected to put off its offering until October at the earliest, according to the Journal, which cited people familiar with the matter.
The company was expected to begin its IPO roadshow on Monday.
Financial advisers and investors were pushing for changes in the company's corporate governance to limit co-founder Adam Nuemann's voting power, and remove his wife from any role in selecting a successor CEO, the Financial Times reported last week.
The company's valuation reached $47 billion earlier this year at the time SoftBank (SFTBY) invested $2 billion. In the runup to the IPO roadshow, the company was garnering valuations in the neighborhood of $15 billion.
5. -- General Motors Could Lose Up to $100 Million a Day if Walkout Continues
The walkout by nearly 49,000 United Auto Workers members has brought to a standstill more than 50 factories and parts warehouses in the union's first strike against the No. 1 U.S. automaker in more than a decade.
The strike could dent GM's profit by between $50 million and $100 million daily, auto-industry analysts told The Wall Street Journal. Stalled production also could cut more than a tenth of GM's expected third-quarter operating profit of about $3.5 billion by the weekend.
Talks between the union and GM continued Monday in Detroit after breaking off during the weekend.
Union spokesman Brian Rothenberg said the two sides have come to terms on only 2% of the contract. "We've got 98% to go," he said, the Associated Press reported.