Here are five things you must know for Wednesday, Oct. 30:
1. -- Stock Futures Mixed Ahead of Fed Rates Decision, Apple Earnings
Contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average were flat, futures for the S&P 500 rose 0.55 points, and Nasdaq futures were up 7.50 points.
Investors widely expect policymakers on the Federal Open Market Committee to vote to cut the fed funds target rate by another 25 basis points to a range of between 1.5% and 1.75% as an ongoing global manufacturing downturn prompts other central banks - most notably the European Central Bank and the Bank of Japan - to keep their own rates low.
The Fed will announce its decision on interest rates at 2 p.m. ET, and Fed Chairman Jerome Powell will hold a press conference at 2:30 p.m.
Stocks finished lower Tuesday as concerns about a potential snag in the U.S.-China trade talks offset strong earnings from Pfizer (PFE) - Get Pfizer Inc. Report and Merck (MRK) - Get Merck & Co., Inc. Report .
Reuters reported reported a U.S. administration official said "phase one" of the trade agreement between Washington and Beijing might not be completed in time for signing in Chile next month as expected.
The S&P 500 set another intraday record high on Tuesday before falling back and closing down 2 points, or 0.08%, at 3,036.89.
The economic calendar in the U.S. Wednesday includes the ADP National Employment Report for October at 8:15 a.m., third-quarter Gross Domestic Product at 8:30 a.m., and Oil Inventories for the week ended Oct. 25 at 10:30 a.m.
2. -- Apple, Facebook, General Electric and Twilio Report Earnings
General Electric (GE) - Get General Electric Company Report earned 15 cents a share on an adjusted basis in the third quarter, beating analysts' estimates by 3 cents. The company said it expects 2019 adjusted earnings of 55 cents to 65 cents a share.
The stock gained 4.41% to $9.47 in premarket trading.
Earnings reports are also expected Wednesday from Apple (AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. Report , Facebook (FB) - Get Meta Platforms Inc. Class A Report , Lyft (LYFT) - Get Lyft, Inc. Class A Report , Starbucks (SBUX) - Get Starbucks Corporation Report , Twilio (TWLO) - Get Twilio, Inc. Class A Report , AK Steel (AKS) - Get AK Steel Holding Corporation Report , Molson Coors Brewing (TAP) - Get Molson Coors Beverage Company Class B Report , Etsy (ETSY) - Get Etsy, Inc. Report , Garmin (GRMN) - Get Garmin Ltd. Report , Metlife (MET) - Get MetLife, Inc. Report and MGM Resorts (MGM) - Get MGM Resorts International Report .
3. -- Fiat Chrysler and Peugeot Owner PSA Confirm They Are in Merger Talks
In separate statements, the automakers said they were talking about a merger that would create a roughly $50 billion auto giant, and the fourth-largest carmaker by volume.
"There are ongoing discussions aimed at creating one of the world's leading mobility groups," Fiat Chrysler said in a statement.
The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday that Fiat Chrysler, the Italian-U.S. automaker, was in merger talks with PSA, the French automaker, which owns Peugeot and Citroen.
The talks come after Fiat Chrysler pulled back in June from a plan to merge with Renault. The French government, a big Renault shareholder, and Nissan (NSANY) , which has an alliance with Renault, declined to support the deal.
4. -- Advanced Micro Devices Issues Light Forecast
Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) - Get Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. Report , the semiconductor maker, posted third-quarter revenue that slightly missed analysts' estimates, earnings that matched forecasts and mixed guidance.
Adjusted earnings were 18 cents a share, in line with Wall Street expectations, while revenue of $1.8 billion came in just below analysts' estimates of $1.81 billion.
Revenue in the company's computing and graphics segment, AMD's largest, rose 36% to $1.28 billion and topped estimates. Enterprise embedded and semi-custom revenue was $525 million, down 27% and below estimates of $695 million.
"Our first full quarter of 7 nanometer Ryzen, Radeon and EPYC processor sales drove our highest quarterly revenue since 2005, our highest quarterly gross margin since 2012 and a significant increase in net income year-over-year," said Lisa Su, AMD president and CEO, in a press release.
For the quarter, gross margin was 43%, better than the 40% in the year-earlier quarter and in line with Wall Street estimates.
The company guided for revenue of $2.1 billion in the fourth quarter, plus or minus $50 million, vs. analysts' estimates of $2.149 billion.
The stock turned slightly higher in premarket trading, rising to $33.06.
5. -- HBO Max to Launch in May for $14.99 a Month
HBO Max, WarnerMedia's much-anticipated subscription video on demand service, will launch in May 2020 at $14.99 a month and feature a mix of HBO shows past and present, original programs, and content from other brands owned, co-owned or licensed by parent company AT&T (T) - Get AT&T Inc. Report .
"In the era of Amazon, Apple, Google and Netflix, scale is no longer defined by distribution to a quarter of U.S. consumers. It's a global game," WarnerMedia CEO John Stankey told an audience Tuesday. "HBO Max will have a positive and immediate impact on the stickiness of our wireless and broadband offerings."
HBO shows -- including current hits such as "Succession" and "Westworld," and past hits like "Sex and the City" - will serve as the anchor of HBO Max. But the service also will go beyond the adult-oriented programming for which HBO is best known.
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