U.S. stocks were lower as traders returned from the Presidents’ Day holiday, after a growing number of companies warned about the impact of the deadly coronavirus to quarterly results.

11:00 a.m. ET: Treasury yields dive on coronavirus jitters

While most investors are watching the coronavirus’ impact on stocks, bond yields have quietly fallen below the psychologically key 2% mark, on fears of the growing risk to the global economy. The 10-year note (TNX) yielded 1.549% in early dealings, while the 2-year also dived under 1.4%.


10:00 a.m. ET: Homebuilders’ sentiment remains steady in February

Builder confidence in the market for single-family homes ticked down just slightly in February, signaling resiliently positive sentiment in the U.S. housing market.

The National Association of Home Builders’ monthly survey registered at 74 in February, a hair below the 75 expected. While a slightly pull-back from January’s reading of 75, February’s result was still above the average of 66 in 2019, and it marked the fourth straight month of a reading above 70.

“Steady job growth, rising wages and low interest rates are fueling demand but builders are still grappling with increasing construction and development costs,” NAHB Chairman Dean Mon said in a statement.

9:33 a.m. ET: Stocks open lower as coronavirus impact broadens out

The three major U.S. stock indices opened lower, extending overnight losses after Apple warned about a negative impact to first-quarter sales due to the coronavirus.

The iPhone-maker was the worst performer in the Dow around market open. The SPY S&P 500 ETF (SPY) and tech-heavy Invesco QQQ ETF (QQQ) were also lower just after the opening bell, with Apple comprising the No. 2 and No. 1 holdings, respectively, for each fund. In the S&P 500, the Energy and Information Technology sectors led declines.

Here were the main moves in markets, as of 9:33 ET:

  • S&P 500 (^GSPC): -0.27% or +9.39 points to 3,370.77

  • Dow (^DJI): -0.36% or -104.71 points to 29,293.37

  • Nasdaq (^IXIC): -0.36% or -34.35 points to 9,696.51

  • Crude oil (CL=F): -2.02% or -1.05 to 51.00 a barrel

  • Gold (GC=F): +0.62% or +9.80 to 1,596.20 per ounce

9:13 a.m. ET: Walmart misses holiday sales expectations, delivers disappointing guidance

Walmart (WMT) shares recovered some earlier losses during the overnight session after the big-box retailer delivered weaker than expected results for the holiday shopping season, missed consensus expectations for fiscal 2021 earnings guidance and said it expected slower e-commerce sales growth for the current year.

Fourth-quarter U.S. comparable same store sales for Walmart locations only, excluding gas sales, rose just 1.9% in the fiscal fourth quarter, below Wall Street estimates for 2.4% growth. And for the full year, Walmart sees comparable sales up 2.5%, below estimates for a rise of 2.7%. Fiscal 2021 earnings per share are expected to come in as high as $5.15, missing expectations for $5.22.

Walmart’s full-year guidance does not include any estimated impact from the coronavirus, although the company said it is monitoring developments in the outbreak. Walmart executives said during an earnings call, however, that coronavirus could impact first-quarter earnings per share by a few cents.

8:30 a.m. ET: Empire State Manufacturing survey underscores resilience in U.S. manufacturing sector, even amid coronavirus

New York’s Empire State Manufacturing Survey – the first regional manufacturing survey since the coronavirus outbreak picked up – came in higher than expected reading for February. The index climbed to 12.9, or the highest level in nine months, as the new orders subindex surged to the highest level since September 2017.

The headline index was well above the 5.0 reading consensus economists expected and 4.8 print from January.

7:39 a.m. ET: Stock futures tumble after Apple says it likely won’t hit sales guidance due to coronavirus

U.S. stock futures tumbled in early trading, following global equities lower after Apple (AAPL) became the latest company to warn about the coronavirus’s impact to its business for the current quarter.

The iPhone-maker on Monday said it would not be able to meet its previously issued revenue guidance of between $63 billion to $67 billion for the quarter ending in March. Apple cited a slower than anticipated ramp-up of its supply chain in China after extended factory closures, as well as weakened product demand among Chinese consumers due to the coronavirus.

Shares of Apple were lower by 3% in early trading. Apple’s suppliers in Asia including TDK Corp. (TTDYK) and Murata Manufacturing (MRAAY) each also declined ahead of the opening bell in the U.S.

As of Tuesday, the global number of reported cases of the coronavirus was 73,328, along with 1,873 deaths, according to the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control.

A growing number of firms have also cut growth forecasts for China and the surrounding region due to the coronavirus. Moody’s Investors Service on Tuesday lowered its growth forecast for China this year to 5.2% from 5.8%, primarily due to decreased import demand among Chinese businesses and consumers amid the outbreak.

Here were the main moves during the pre-market session, as of 7:39 a.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,366.75, down 14.25 points or 0.42%

  • Dow futures (YM=F): 29,237.00, down 158 points or 0.54%

  • Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 9,569.75, down 62.5 points or 0.65%

  • Crude oil (CL=F): $51.07 per barrel, down $0.98 or 1.88%

  • Gold (GC=F): $1,590.30 per ounce, up $3.90 or 0.25%

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange April 24, 2014. U.S. stocks were flat in volatile trading on Thursday, with indexes cutting early gains on a resurgence of concerns related to Ukraine, though Apple jumped following its results. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid (UNITED STATES – Tags: BUSINESS)

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