OPENING BELL

Wall Street equity index futures look downbeat, set to pull back ahead of Friday’s opening bell – new trade tensions adding to global economic growth concerns.

This on the heels of Wednesday’s session which saw the US stock market bounce back from a two-day rout, as higher oil prices rejuvenated the Energy Sector (+1.5%).

In defiance of bullish efforts, the recovery was short lived. Market indices lost steam into the close with traders looking ahead to the Thanksgiving Day holiday.

Note: US financial markets will be closed early today, Black Friday, at 1pm EST.

The session came to a close with the S&P 500 positive +0.34% after rallying as much as +1.1% earlier in the session; the Energy sector’s charge higher being offset by losses in the Utilities sector (-1.4%), the worst performer in the S&P benchmark.

Meanwhile, the Dow Jones closed the session flat, positive +0.06%, whereas the tech-heavy Nasdaq climbed +0.7% to end the day.

Despite Wednesday’s gains, the Dow and S&P 500 still remain in negative territory for 2018.

In today’s economic data front; Investors are likely to monitor Markit Services PMI data set to be released at  9:45am ET.

TODAY’S TOP HEADLINES

China & Trade: Washington Asks Allies to Drop Huawei. (The WSJ)
The US government has initiated an extraordinary outreach campaign to foreign allies, trying to persuade wireless and internet providers in these countries to avoid telecommunications equipment from China’s Huawei Technologies.

Energy & Oil: Trump shows he will turn blind eye to Khashoggi killing, Turkey says. (CNBC)
Turkey’s foreign minister has accused President Donald Trump of turning a blind eye to the killing of Jamal Khashoggi. Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu added Friday that “not everything is money.”

EU, UK & Politics: EU struggles to agree on Gibraltar before Brexit summit. (CNBC)
Spain has asked for changes to the withdrawal treaty and the declaration on a new EU-UK relationship. It wants to make clear that any decisions about the disputed British overseas territory of Gibraltar would only be taken in direct talks with Madrid.

ECONOMIC CALENDAR
Today’s Economical Announcements

09:45AM – Manufacturing PMI (Nov) (Previous: 55.7)
09:45AM – Markit Composite PMI (Nov) (Previous: 54.9)
09:45AM – Services PMI (Nov) (Previous: 54.8)

STOCKS IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Pre-Market Movers & News Related Stocks.

Rockwell Collins (COL): [NEWS] China regulators have given conditional approval for the buyout of the aviation systems company by United Technologies.

Overstock.com (OSTK): [NEWS] CEO Patrick Byrne told The Wall Street Journal that he expects to wrap up a sale of Overstock’s retail business by February, although he did not name potential buyers.

Amazon.com (AMZN), Walmart (WMT), Macy’s (M), Target (TGT), Best Buy (BBY): [NEWS] Retailers will be on watch as reports start to emerge on the pace of Black Friday shopping.

Sabre (SABR): [NEWS] The flight booking system company and Spanish rival Amadeus are the targets of a European Union probe, which is examining a possible breach of antitrust rules.

Facebook (FB): [NEWS] The head of George Soros’s philanthropic foundation called for oversight of Facebook by lawmakers, following revelations that it had hired an opposition research firm to scrutinize the billionaire investor.

Visa (V), Mastercard (MA): [NEWS] Have offered to trim merchant fees in Europe for card payments by tourists, according to a Reuters report.

Tesla (TSLA): [NEWS] Is cutting the price of its Model X and Model S cars in China. The price cuts will range from 12 to 26 percent.

Apple (AAPL): [NEWS] Is effectively cutting the price of its iPhone XR in Japan, according to the Wall Street Journal, by offering subsidies to mobile network operators in that country.

Comcast (CMCSA), Charter Communications (CHTR), Altice (ATUS), Dish Network (DISH): Cable and satellite operators will be in focus, as analysts wait to see how many subscribers are willing to pay $19.99 to watch today’s winner-take-all golf match between Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson.

MOMENTUM STOCKS

GAINERS: BECN
LOSERS: MNK

TODAY’S IPOs
None.