Dow Futures Down 170 Pts; Fiery Presidential Debate Weighs
-U.S. stocks are set to open lower Wednesday, as the chaotic nature of the first presidential debate raised concerns of a contested election result.
The major U.S. cash indices are on course to close down for the month, for the first time since March. Indeed, as it stands, this would be the weakest September for stocks since 2011.
President Trump and his Democratic challenger, former Vice President Biden, faced off in their first debate of the campaign in Cleveland on Tuesday, an event that offered little of substance with both sides seemingly keen to trade insults.
Trump again declined to say he would accept the results of the election, instead railing against mail-in ballots and warning that the contest would not “end well.”
“Investors have gone back to worrying about a contested election, a delay in the outcome and whether Trump will go peacefully if he loses,” said Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy at AMP (OTC:AMLTF) Capital, in a Reuters report.
Meanwhile, the United States recorded 42,185 new coronavirus infections and 914 virus-related deaths on Tuesday, according to Johns Hopkins University. In New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a citywide daily rate of positive virus tests of 3.25%, the highest daily rate since June.
On the data slate, the third print for Q2 GDP is expected to be unchanged, showing a drop of 31.7%, ADP nonfarm employment is forecast to show a bump of 650,000 for September from 428,000 in the previous month, and pending home sales are forecast to have increased 3.2% in August from July, when they rose 5.9%.
In corporate news, the focus is likely to be on Palantir (NYSE:PLTR), as the data-mining firm starts trading on the New York Stock Exchange via a direct listing. The company has attracted a lot of interest since starting in 2003, backed by money from the CIA to develop software for the government.
Oil prices fell Wednesday, continuing the sharp losses of the previous session, on the back of worries about future consumption. Oil major Royal Dutch Shell (LON:RDSa) vividly illustrated these concerns, saying it’s set to cut up to 9,000 more jobs.