Asia Markets: Japan +0.4% to 18332. Hong Kong closed. China closed. India -0.8% to 29231.
European Markets: London +0.4%. Paris -0.3%. Frankfurt -0.3%.
Futures: Dow +0.1%. S&P flat. Nasdaq +0.2%. Crude -0.4% to $51.61. Gold -0.3% to $1204.
Ten-year Treasury Yield: +4 bps to 2.11%
9:45 PMI Manufacturing Index Flash
The economies of Germany and France picked up momentum in February, boosting eurozone PMI to 53.5 this month, up from January’s 52.6. Markit’s German composite Purchasing Managers Index rose to its best in seven months, increasing to 54.3 from 53.5, while France also reported strong figures.
Key earnings before the open:
B, CHH, COG, COMM, DE, ENB, ERF, GOV, HCN, IPGP, IRM, LH, PEG, PNW, SATS, SWC, TC, TFX
U.S. stocks opened lower today as investors play watch-and-wait for the outcome of a key meeting between Greece and Eurogroup ministers. The downside gained momentum after the Flash PMI numbers showed U.S. manufacturing activity ticked up, but the expansion was at a slower pace than last year.
The biggest refinery strike since 1980 continues after the United Steelworkers union instructed members to reject a seventh labor contract offered. The union says the proposal, on behalf of companies including Shell (RDS.A), Chevron (CVX) and Exxon Mobil (XOM), “fails to improve safety” in an enforceable way. Over 5,000 workers have walked out of nine U.S. refineries – which account for 13% of total U.S. fuel capacity.
Enbridge returned to profit in the fourth-quarter as new projects entered service, although the pipeline operator’s adjusted results fell short of expectations. Adjusted earnings rose 13% to C$409M from C$362M in the year-prior quarter. Enbridge (NYSE:ENB) also reaffirmed its guidance, saying it was confident it could deliver 10%-12% average annual growth in adjusted earnings per share over the next four years.
Sysco (SYY) says the FTC has filed suit against its proposed $3.5B takeover of rival U.S. Foods. The agency says the proposed merger would “eliminate significant competition in the marketplace and create a dominant national broadline food service distributor.”
Apple is reported to be making strides to begin production of an electric vehicle as early as 2020. The company’s car team employs about 200 people at present.
Due to the parts shortage from the West Coast port slowdown, Honda (HMC) says it expects an output loss of around 5K cars from Feb. 24 to March 2 at two North American car factories.
A U.S. District Judge has vetoed BP’s (BP) request to cap its Deepwater Horizon oil spill liabilities, siding with prosecutors who had argued that regulators were instructed by Congress to raise statutory maximum fines to account for inflation.