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Consumer sentiment — What you need to know in markets on Friday

Myles Udland
Markets Reporter

The end of August is here.

On Friday, the final trading day of August will bring U.S. investors into a three-day holiday weekend with stocks near record highs.

After the S&P 500 and Nasdaq both logged records on Wednesday, all three major indexes dropped Thursday after negative trade headlines late Thursday afternoon indicated Trump is likely to slap tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods next week.

In an interview with Bloomberg News on Thursday, Trump also said that the U.S. could pull out of the World Trade Organization if it doesn’t “shape up.”

Elsewhere in his discussion with Bloomberg, Trump said he is weighing whether to tax capital gains at a rate indexed to inflation. This could be the “good news” that Trump teased earlier Thursday in a tweet, which read, “The news from the Financial Markets is even better than anticipated. For all of you that have made a fortune in the markets, or seen your 401k’s rise beyond your wildest expectations, more good news is coming!”

Expect trade to continue to be in focus on Friday as U.S.-Canada trade negotiations to re-work NAFTA continue with both sides hoping to reach a deal by week’s end.

President Donald Trump waves as he boards Air Force One to travel to a campaign rally in Evansville, Ind., Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018, at Andrews Air Force Base, Md. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

On Friday, the schedule will bring investors a final check on the U.S. consumer for the week when the University of Michigan releases its final look at consumer sentiment in August. This reading is expected to be a slight improvement over the preliminary report posted two weeks ago which indicated consumers’ perceptions of current buying conditions were lowered due to higher prices.

The August Chicago PMI report is also set for release in the morning and expected to show continued expansion of activity in the midwest.

And on the earnings side, Big Lots (BIG) and Hurco (HURC) are the only companies in the Russell 3000 set to report results.

Myles Udland is a writer at Yahoo Finance. Follow him on Twitter @MylesUdland