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Morning Brief: Apple shares near bear market

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

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What to watch today

It’s a retail earnings bonanza with Lowe’s (LOW), Target (TGT), Best Buy (BBY), Kohl’s (KSS), Ross Stores (ROST), T.J. Maxx (TJX), Hormel Foods (HRL) and Campbell Soup (CPB) reporting before the bell, and Foot Locker (FL) and Gap (GPS) reporting after market close.

A slew of housing data will be released. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg are expecting October housing starts of 1.230 million versus 1.201 in the prior month. Housing starts month-on-month for October is expected to have grown by 2.4% after seeing a decline of 5.35% previously. Building permits for October of 1.26 million is expected versus the 1.27 million revised in September. Building permits month-over-month for October are expected to have declined 0.8% after a growth of 1.7% previously.

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Top news

 Thursday, Nov. 15, 2018. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar, File)

Apple shares near bear market territory: Apple Inc. (AAPL) shares dropped close to bear market territory Monday on concern consumers are no longer clamoring for its cornerstone product, the iPhone. The stock closed at a record of $232.07 on Oct. 3. Since then it’s plunged almost 20% — the official bear market threshold — as multiple suppliers indicated the company is cutting parts orders for the latest iPhones. [Bloomberg]

Vanguard ratchets up index-fund price battle: Vanguard Group is lowering the minimum amount customers need to invest to get cheaper prices on more than three dozen of its index funds. The $5.3 trillion indexing giant’s move is the latest salvo in its push to lure investors from rivals as asset managers come under pressure to slash the costs of funds. [The Wall Street Journal]

Florida lawsuit targets CVS, Walgreens in opioid crisis:  Florida, one of many states going after participants in the opioid supply chain in court, has added Walgreens (WBA) and CVS (CVS) to a lawsuit previously filed against manufacturers Purdue Pharma, Allergan and others. The lawsuit claims that Walgreens and CVS knew or should have known that some of the opioids they ordered and supplied to Florida communities would eventually be diverted to the black market because the quantities far exceeded medical justification. [Yahoo Finance]

L Brands falls after cutting annual dividend in half: L Brands (LB) shares fell 4% post-market Monday after the company said it would slash its annual dividend in half to $1.20. The company, known for its brands Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works, beat profit expectations. [CNBC]

Mondelez hires Morgan Stanley to study Tim Tam bid: Mondelez International Inc. is working with Morgan Stanley as it studies a bid for Arnott’s Biscuits, the Australian maker of Tim Tams, and Danish butter-cookie producer Kelsen Group, people familiar with the matter said. [Bloomberg]

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The Morning Brief provides a quick rundown on what to watch in the markets, top news stories, and the best of Yahoo Finance Originals.