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Here are five things you must know for Monday, Aug. 14:
1. -- U.S. stock futures were higher on Monday, Aug. 14, following European market gains, as investors returned to riskier assets after a week of losses.
Last week, tensions escalated between North Korea and the U.S. after Trump warned of "fire and fury like the world has never seen" if North Korea continued to issue threats. North Korea then said it was assessing a potential missile attack on U.S. territory Guam.
Markets reacted poorly. The Dow Jones Industrial Average snapped a nine-day stretch of record closes, while the S&P 500 had its worst weekly loss since March 24. European indexes also sold off.
On Friday evening, Trump announced a planned press conference for Monday afternoon, though it is unclear whether North Korea will be discussed.
Geopolitical tensions could pressure markets further in the coming week if Trump's rhetoric continues to intensify as it has so far. On Friday morning, he tweeted that the U.S. military was "locked and loaded" in case of "unwise" actions by North Korea.
"That's what investors like the least," Bodhi Ganguli, lead economist at Dun & Bradstreet, told TheStreet. "Uncertainty of a kind that you cannot actually predict anything out of it at all."
2. -- Violence and chaos erupted in Charlottesville, VA over the weekend as white nationalists and protesters clashed. Events escalated when a car rammed into a protesting crowd, killing one and injuring at least 19 others. James Alex Fields, Jr. has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of 32-year-old Heather Heyer. Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe declared a state of emergency earlier Saturday.
President Trump denounced the violence in Charlottesville in a statement on Saturday. In comments to the press, Trump said, "We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence, on many sides."
However, critics said Trump's comments did not go far enough, particularly as he blamed violence "on many sides." Photos of a white supremacist rally at the University of Virginia on Friday night flooded social media, inflamed racial tensions, and drew anti-racism protesters on Friday and Saturday. The Friday night gathering was in protest of the planned removal of a Robert E. Lee statue commemorating his leadership of the Confederate army during the Civil War.
The earnings calendar does not heat up until later in the week. On the docket, Advance Auto Parts Inc. (AAP - Get Report) , Coach Inc. (COH) , Dick's Sporting Goods Inc. (DKS - Get Report) , Home Depot Inc. (HD - Get Report) , TJX Companies Inc. (TJX - Get Report) , and Urban Outfitters Inc. (URBN - Get Report) will report on Tuesday, Aug. 15; L Brands Inc. (LB - Get Report) , and Target Corp. (TGT - Get Report) on Wednesday, Aug. 16; Bon-Ton Stores Inc. (BONT) , Buckle Inc. (BKE - Get Report) , Gap Inc. (GPS - Get Report) , Ross Stores Inc. (ROST - Get Report) , and Walmart Stores Inc. (WMT - Get Report) on Thursday, Aug. 17; and Estee Lauder Companies Inc. (EL - Get Report) on Friday, Aug. 18.
More than 90% of S&P 500 companies have reported earnings so far this quarter. Of those, nearly 74% have exceeded earnings estimates, while 68% have topped sales forecasts, according to Thomson Reuters data. The consumer staples and consumer discretionary sectors have been the smallest earnings growth this quarter, rising just 4.6% and 3.7%, respectively. That compares to an unparalleled 538.7% surge in energy earnings and a 16.3% increase in tech.
4. -- The economic calendar in the U.S. on Monday is bare.
Later in the week, retail sales for July should give an indication of how consumers are spending in the first month of the third quarter. Economists surveyed by FactSet anticipate sales will increase 0.4% in July, reversing a 0.2% decline in June. Retail sales will be released on Tuesday.
It's a busy week on the economic calendar. The Empire State Manufacturing Survey and the housing market index for August, import and export prices for July, and business inventories for June will be released on Tuesday; housing starts for July, and the Federal Open Market Committee's minutes from its late July meeting on Wednesday; the Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook Survey for August, and industrial production for July on Thursday; and a preliminary read on consumer sentiment for August on Friday.
5. -- Crude oil prices were slightly lower on Monday morning on concerns over weaker demand in China and growing production in the U.S.
The National Bureau of Statistics showed that Chinese refineries processed 10.71 million barrels per day in July. That was 500,000 barrels per day lower than in June and marked its lowest level since September 2016, according to Reuters.
Meanwhile, U.S. production continues to climb. On Friday, a weekly read showed U.S. rigs drilling for oil increased by 3 to 768 in the past week, according to Baker Hughes. The increase reversed a small decline a week earlier.
Global oversupply remains a risk to commodities markets. The Paris-based International Energy Agency said in its regular Monthly Oil Market Report on Friday that there would be "more confidence that rebalancing is here to stay if some producers party to the output agreements were not, just as they are gaining the upper hand, showing signs of weakening their resolve."
Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries' combined production increased by 173,000 barrels per day to nearly 32.9 million barrels in July. The cartel previously made a pact to limit output, though there are no restrictions on some members such as Libya.
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