Morning Call: Global stocks mostly higher as U.S. and China trade concerns ease; Jun E-mini S&Ps up +0.53%; Russia's MOEX Stock Index falls -6.46% after U.S. sanctions Russian billionaires.
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 ESM18 - S&P 500 E-Mini

Overnight Markets and News

Jun E-mini S&Ps (ESM18 +0.59%) this morning are up +0.53% and European stocks are up +0.35% as global stock markets rally on reduced trade concerns between China and the U.S. President Trump's top economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, said Friday that the U.S. and China are holding "back-channel discussions" to resolve an escalating trade dispute and President Trump tweeted Sunday that "he and Chinese President Xi will always be friends, no matter what happens with our dispute on trade." The markets will look to Tuesday's speech by Chinese President Xi at the Boao forum for Asia for clues to China's response to solve the trade dispute with the U.S. Russia's benchmark MOEX Stock Index plunged nearly 7% today after the U.S. imposed new sanctions on Kremlin-connected billionaires and as tensions rose between the U.S. and Russia following the latest chemical attack in Syria. Asian stocks settled higher: Japan +0.51%, Hong Kong +1.29%, China +0.23%, Taiwan +0.67%, Australia +0.34%, Singapore +0.22%, South Korea +0.59%, India +0.48%.

The dollar index (DXY00 -0.39%) is up +0.10%. EUR/USD (^EURUSD -0.03%) is down -0.08%. USD/JPY (^USDJPY +0.16%) is up +0.15%.

Jun 10-year T-note prices (ZNM18 -0-050) are down -4 ticks.

Chicago Fed President Evans aid the Fed should continue gradually raising interest rates if data on consumer prices indicate inflation will soon reach its 2% target. He added, "the headwinds that we were facing have turned into tailwinds, fiscal policy has been much more supportive of further growth, and so the need for more accommodative monetary policy is less than it was before."

Eurozone Apr Sentix investor confidence fell -4.4 to a 14-month low of 19.6, weaker than expectations of -3.2 to 20.8.

The German Feb trade balance was in surplus by +18.4 billion euros, narrower than expectations of +20.1 billion euros. Feb exports unexpectedly fell -3.2% m/m, weaker than expectations of +0.4% m/m and the biggest decline in 2-1/3 years. Feb imports fell -1.3%, weaker than expectations of +0.5% and the biggest decline in 8 months.

U.S. Stock Preview

Key U.S. news today includes: (1) USDA weekly grain export inspections, (2) USDA weekly Crop Progress.

Notable Russell 1000 earnings reports today include: none.

U.S. IPO's scheduled to price today: none.

Equity conferences this week: Mizuho Energy Summit on Mon, IPAA Oil & Gas Conference on Mon-Tue, Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. Software Summit on Tue, UBS Chicago Utility Mini Conference on Tue, ACAMS 23RD Annual International AML & Financial Crime Conference on Tue, J.P. Morgan Retail Round-Up Conference on Wed.

Market Comments

June S&P 500 E-minis (ESM18 +0.59%) this morning are up +13.75 points (+0.53%). Friday's closes: S&P 500 -2.19%%, Dow Jones -2.34%, Nasdaq -2.45%. The S&P 500 on Friday closed sharply lower after President Trump late Thursday announced that he is considering tariffs on another $100 billion of Chinese products. Stocks were also undercut by the weak March payroll report of +103,000 and the net -50,000 downward revision to Jan-Feb payrolls.

June 10-year T-notes (ZNM18 -0-050) this morning are down -4 ticks. Friday's closes: TYM8 +14.5, FVM8 +8. Jun 10-year T-notes on Friday closed with solid gains due to the fresh trade turmoil and the sharp sell-off in the U.S. stock market. T-notes were also boosted by the weak March payroll report of +103,000 and the -50,000 net downward revision in Jan-Feb payrolls. T-note prices were undercut after Fed Chair Powell in a speech on Friday called for a continued slow rise in interest rates and said that it is too early to consider any impact from tariffs.

The dollar this morning is higher with the dollar index (DXY00 -0.39%) up +0.094 (+0.10%), EUR/USD (^EURUSD -0.03%) down -0.0010 (-0.08%) and USD/JPY (^USDJPY +0.16%) up +0.16 (+0.15%). Friday's closes: Dollar Index -0.352 (-0.39%), EUR/USD +0.0041 (+0.33%), USD/JPY -0.46 (-0.43%). The dollar index on Friday fell back from Thursday's 5-week high and closed moderately lower on renewed U.S. trade turmoil and the sharp sell-off in U.S. stocks. The dollar was also undercut by the weak U.S. payroll report and the decline in the U.S. T-note yield, which undercut the dollar's interest rate differentials.

Metals prices this morning are mixed with Jun gold (GCM18 -0.30%) -4.6 (-0.34%), May silver (SIK18 -0.23%) -0.057 (-0.35%) and May copper (HGK18 +0.20%) +0.005 (+0.16%). Friday's closes: Jun gold +7.60 (+0.57%), May silver +0.007 (+0.04%), May copper -1.60 (-0.52%). Metals on Friday closed mixed. Gold prices were boosted by safe-haven demand after President Trump's threat for tariffs on another $100 billion of Chinese goods caused a sharp sell-off in stocks. Copper prices fell on the diminished economic outlook caused by the fresh trade turmoil.

May crude oil prices (CLK18 +0.82%) this morning are up +16 cents (+0.26%) and May gasoline (RBK18 +0.58%) is +0.0022 (+0.11%). Friday's closes: May crude -1.48 (-2.33%), May gasoline -0.0269 (-1.36%). May crude oil and gasoline on Friday closed sharply lower on President Trump's new Chinese tariff threat, which could cause China to retaliate by slapping tariffs on U.S. crude oil and LNG exports. Crude oil prices also saw carry-over pressure from Wednesday's EIA report showing that U.S. oil production rose by +0.3% w/w to a new record high. Friday's Baker Hughes report was bearish since it showed that the number of active oil rigs jumped by 11 rigs to a 3-year high of 808 rigs.

Overnight U.S. Stock Movers

General Motors (GM -0.84%) is up over 2% in pre-market trading after it was upgraded to 'Overweight' from 'Equal-Weight' at Morgan Stanley with a price target of $48.

Agilent (A -3.09%) was upgraded to 'Buy' from 'Neutral' at Goldman Sachs.

TD Ameritrade Holding Co (AMTD -2.69%) was upgraded to 'Buy' from 'Neutral' at Bank of America/Merrill Lynch with a price target of $66.

Discover Financial Services (DFS -2.48%) was upgraded to 'Equal-Weight' from 'Underweight' at Stephens with a price target of $73.

Franklin Resources (BEN -2.44%) was downgraded to 'Neutral' from 'Buy' at Bank of America/Merrill Lynch.

Regeneron (REGN -2.73%) was downgraded to 'Market Perform' from 'Outperform' at Raymond James.

Boeing (BA -3.06%) received a $12.3 billion deal for 47 dreamliners from American Airlines.

InteractiveCorp (IAC -2.04%), Barry Diller's media company, is trading at a discount, according to a weekend article by Barrons.

Smartphone chipmakers such as Skyworks Solutions (SWKS -3.28%), Qorvo (QRVO -2.37%), Qualcomm (QCOM -3.49% and Synaptics (SYNA -3.72%) will struggle this year due to weak phone sales, according to a weekend article by Barrons. However, the article spoke favorably about phone screen maker Universal Display (OLED -2.99%) due to its favorable valuation after this year's 43% drop.

China Internet (CIFS -8.61%) rallied 2% on some short-covering in after-hours trading, trimming Friday's regular-session 8.6% drop on a Muddy Waters tweet that the noted short-seller remains short.

Cesca Therapeutics (KOOL -0.60%) fell 7% in after-hours trading after news the company filed to offer up to $20 million worth of shares.