Market Snapshot: Stock-index futures drift lower ahead of U.S. inflation reading

Stock-index futures drifted lower Wednesday, a day after the Dow Jones Industrial Average snapped a six-day winning streak, with investors awaiting a reading on May consumer inflation as they continue to eye the U.S.-China trade fight.

Dow futures YMM19, -0.17%  fell 54 points, or 0.2%, to 26,011, while S&P 500 futures ESM19, -0.16%  lost 5.4 points, or 0.2%, to 2,881.50. Nasdaq-100 futures NQM19, -0.35%  were off 30 points, or 0.4%, at 7,488.25.

What’s driving the market?

Stocks ended with small losses Tuesday after flipping between positive and negative territory. The Dow DJIA, -0.05%  closed 14.17 points lower at 26,048.51, off 0.1%, while the S&P 500 SPX, -0.03%  shed 1.01 points, or less than 0.1%, to close at 2,885.72. The Nasdaq COMP, -0.01%  finished with a loss of 0.6 points at 7,822.57. The declines ended five-day winning streaks for both the S&P and the Nasdaq.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he was the one “holding up” a trade deal with China, saying the two countries would “either do a great deal…or we’re not doing a deal at all.”

Analysts blamed the remarks for casting a somewhat negative tone over global equities.

Investors are also watching protests in Hong Kong. Police on Wednesday fired tear gas and high-pressure water hoses at protesters who massed outside government headquarters in opposition to a proposed extradition bill that has sparked concerns over China’s control of the semi-autonomous territory.

What’s on the economic calendar?

Investors are focusing on inflation data, with the May consumer price index set for release at 8:30 a.m. Eastern.

What companies are in focus?

Shares of electric car maker Tesla Inc. TSLA, +1.98%  were 2.6% higher in premarket action, after Chief Executive Elon Musk late Tuesday took the stage at the company’s shareholder meeting and denied the company was facing demand and production problems.

In deal news, France’s Dassault Systems SE DSY, +1.49%  said it reached an agreement to acquire U.S. technology group Medidata Solutions Inc. MDSO, +4.36%  in an agreement valued at $5.8 billion. Dassault will offer $92.25 a share for Medidata in an all-cash deal. Medidata shares were down 4% in premarket action at $90.75 a share.

What are analysts saying?

“President Trump has defended his use of levies, and the threat of higher levies, as a way of trying to rebalance the trading relationship with China. Beijing have reiterated their willingness to hold a firm line against the U.S. The standoff is back at the forefront of dealers’ minds and it has prompted some investors to take some money off the table,” said David Madden, market analyst at CMC Markets UK, in a note.

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