Islamic State militants released another video depicting the beheading of a second American journalist in as many weeks. Following the release of the video, The Wall Street Journal reported that President Obama ordered 350 additional military troops to travel to Iraq in order to protect U.S. diplomatic facilities.
ISIS has said the beheadings were in retaliation to U.S. airstrikes in Iraq and will likely put more pressure on the White House to take stronger action against the group. However, Obama has shown no signs of shifting his current course so far.
In other news around the markets:
- Home Depot (NYSE: HD) is looking into a security breach that could have exposed customer credit and debit card data. The company has admitted to looking into “unusual activity,” but is waiting to announce the details until a data breach has been confirmed. On Tuesday, Home Depot assured customers that they would be notified as soon as possible if their data is at risk.
- On Wednesday, CVS Caremark (NYSE: CVS) is expected to announce a new name that will coincide with its final sale of tobacco products across the U.S. The company, slated to be called CVS Health, will be losing out on $2 billion in annual sales from tobacco products, but is hoping to distinguish itself from other pharmacies as a provider of health services.
- Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) is racing to do damage control after a recent security breach in its iCloud data resulted in the release of several nude celebrity photos. The company is gearing up for a new product launch on September 9, and the iCloud issues could hang a dark cloud over the highly anticipated introduction of Apple’s latest offerings.
- Disappointment over China’s weak manufacturing PMI reading was offset on Wednesday after the nation’s services sector improved in August. HSBC’s services PMI reading for China was 54.2 in August, a surprisingly large jump from July’s 50.0 reading.
Asian markets were mostly higher with the exception of the KOSPI, which lost 0.02 percent. The NIKKEI was up 0.38 percent, the Shanghai composite rose 0.83 percent, the Shenzhen composite rose 0.75 percent and the Hang Seng index was up 1.91 percent.
Europe’s markets began the day on a high note; the FTSE rose 0.26 percent, the STOXX 600 was up 0.27 percent, the DAX gained 0.35 percent and the CAC 40 was up 0.40 percent.
Energy futures rose on Wednesday; Brent futures gained 0.43 percent, and WTI futures were up 0.37 percent. Gold and silver gained 0.33 percent and 0.46 percent, respectively, and industrial metals were mostly higher with the exception of tin, which lost 0.62 percent. Copper gained 0.05 percent, aluminum rose 0.57 percent and zinc gained 0.89 percent.
The euro was steady at $1.3134, but lost 0.05 percent against the pound and 0.17 percent against the yen. The dollar also lost against the yen, down 0.12 percent, and fell 0.03 percent against the pound and 0.31 percent against the Australian dollar.
Notable earnings released on Tuesday included:
- Conn’s (NASDAQ: CONN) reported second quarter EPS of $0.50 on revenue of $353.00 million, compared to last year’s EPS of $0.52 on revenue of $270.69 million.
- Aviat Networks (NASDAQ: AVNW) reported a fourth quarter loss of $0.13 on revenue of $85.09 million, compared to last year’s EPS of $0.01 on revenue of $109.00 million.
Stocks moving in the premarket included:
- Under Armour (NYSE: UA) was up 0.84 percent in premarket trade after rising 4.05 percent on Tuesday.
- Yahoo! (NASDAQ: YHOO) gained 0.84 percent in premarket trade after rising 1.97 percent on Tuesday.
- Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) was up 0.62 percent in premarket trade after gaining 1.12 percent on Tuesday.
- Transocean (NYSE: RIG) was up 0.58 percent in premarket trade after losing 1.40 percent over the past five days.
Notable earnings expected on Wednesday include:
- Navistar International (NYSE: NAV) is expected to report a third quarter loss of $0.66 on revenue of $2.96 billion, compared to last year’s loss of $2.94 on revenue of $2.86 billion.
- PVH (NYSE: PVH) is expected to report second quarter EPS of $1.42 on revenue of $1.99 billion, compared to last year’s EPS of $1.39 on revenue of $1.96 billion.
- ABM Industries (NYSE: ABM) is expected to report third quarter EPS of $0.46 on revenue of $1.27 billion, compared to last year’s EPS of $0.41 on revenue of $1.22 billion.
- Toll Brothers (NYSE: TOL) is expected to report third quarter EPS of $0.45 on revenue of $989.29 million, compared to last year’s EPS of $0.26 on revenue of $689.16 million.
PMI readings will dominate the economic calendar again on Wednesday with Germany, Spain, Italy, France, the eurozone and the U.K. set to release services PMI figures. Other notable economic releases will include the U.S. redbook and eurozone retail sales.
For a recap of Tuesday’s market action, click here.
Tune into Benzinga’s pre-market info show with Nigam Arora, Harlan Pyan & Jason Sen here.
See more from Benzinga
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