U.S. Markets closed

Stocks - Futures Inch Down as Iran Tensions Drive Gold Higher

Investing.com - U.S. futures were lower on Tuesday as tensions in the Middle East continued to bubble after the White House cut off Iran’s access to financial resources.

The sanctions, aimed at Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and other top officials, close the door to negotiations between the two countries, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said.

Tensions between Washington and Tehran have risen since President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of the UN-sponsored 2015 nuclear deal. Trump initiated, then called off, a military strike last week in response to Iran shooting down an unmanned U.S. drone.

Tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 futures fell 23 points or 0.3% by 6:42 AM ET (10:42 GMT), while Dow futures was down 34 points or 0.1% and S&P 500 futures inched down 4 points or 0.2%.

Allergan (NYSE:AGN) surged 34% in premarket trading after the Wall Street Journal reported that AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV) is nearing a deal to buy the Botox-maker for $60 billion. AbbVie fell 4.6%.

FedEx (NYSE:FDX) was down 1.8% ahead of its earnings release after the bell on Tuesday. The global economy bellweather is expected to give more insight into the extent of trade problems with China. The shipping company is also suing the Commerce Department after the U.S. government's ban on exports to some Chinese companies caused problems in its relationship with Huawei, a major customer.

Micron (NASDAQ:MU), which inched down 0.1%, is also expected to report when the market closes.

On the economic front, consumer confidence is out at 10:00 AM ET (14:00 GMT), along with new home sales data.

Investors will also be listening into remarks from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell for further confirmation of rate cuts in July. Powell speaks in a New York Times interview at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York at 1:00 PM ET (17:00 GMT) .

Gold miners are also in focus after the yellow metal surged overnight to $1,442.15, its highest in five and a half years. Harmony Gold Mining was up 2.5%, while Barrick was up 0.9% and Newmont was up 0.7%.

Elsewhere in commodities, crude oil slipped 0.5% to $57.62 a barrel. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the greenback against a basket of six major currencies, was flat at 95.502.

Related Articles

AbbVie to buy Allergan in $63 billion deal

India stocks higher at close of trade; Nifty 50 up 0.83%

Woodford fund managers used 'flawed' EU rules, Britain's FCA chief says