Stocks fell on Wednesday for the third consecutive session, driven by concerns over President Donald Trump’s increasingly belligerent trade stance with reports of a desire to close the near $400-billion trade deficit with China by $100 billion. Trump is apparently considering steep tariffs and investment restrictions that could be applied as early as next week. These are expected to total as much as $60 billion.
Trump also named CNBC host Larry Kudlow as his head economic advisor, suggested he was open to doing a deal on immigration in exchange for border wall funding, and is reportedly thinking of firing Attorney General Jeff Sessions.
In the end, the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 1%, the S&P 500 lost 0.6%, the Nasdaq Composite lost 0.2% amid the continued outperformance of big-tech stocks — especially Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) — and the Russell 2000 lost 0.5%. The dollar and Treasury bonds were mixed, gold fell and crude oil inched higher.
Technical shenanigans were again on display, with the S&P 500 testing its 50-day moving average several times throughout the trading session without losing it.
Three Hot Stocks to Watch Today
Heading into Thursday’s session, here are three stocks to watch:
The Dow Jones was pulled down by a big 2.5% loss in Boeing Co (NYSE:BA) — losing the 50-day moving average for the first time since last May — as it fell back below the 25,000 threshold. This is due to the price-weighted nature of the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Boeing’s pricey shares, which are trading near $330 — up from $120 before the 2016 president election.
Shares have since soared on hopes for increased military spending and a solid order book, especially for the single-aisle 737. But profit taking is overdue now ahead of a likely test of the 200-day moving average.
Signet Jewelers (SIG)
Signet Jewelers Ltd. (NYSE:SIG) fell 20.2%, hitting its lowest level in six years. The damage-dealer? Reports of a 5.2% decline in same-store sales. Meanwhile, revenues grew 1% to $2.3 billion and forward guidance was tepid.
Management is responding with plans to close 200 stores, open 40 new locations and invest in its e-commerce presence. Coming in the context of a weak retail sales report, investors just aren’t giving the benefit of the doubt to anything in the retail space right now.
Tesla Inc (NASDAQ:TSLA) fell 4.5% on reports of manufacturing problems and another executive departure. The decline threatens to push shares down out of a choppy post-November trading range, setting up a possible return to its early November low, which would be nearly a 10% decline from current levels. The Model 3 rollout remains troublesome as competitors like GM and upstarts like Lucid nip at its heels.
The company will next report results on May 2, after the close. Analysts are looking for a loss of $3.21-per-share on revenues of $3.6 billion.
Check out Serge Berger’s Trade of the Day for March 15.
Today’s Trading Landscape
To see a list of the companies reporting earnings today, click here.
For a list of this week’s economic reports due out, click here.
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