Before the bell: What you need to know before the US market open

 
Billy Bambrough
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Macau's Booming Gaming Industry
Macau gaming revenue has been dealt a winning hand for the first time in more than two years (Source: Getty)

The pound has leapt against the dollar after the UK's manufacturing sector smashed expectations and China's manufacturing sector has also bounced back.

Here's what you need to know before the US market open at 2:30pm London time.

Pre-market futures are looking mixed ahead of the open. The S&P is off by 0.1 per cent, while the Nasdaq is up by 0.28 per cent. The Dow is up by 0.19 per cent. The US 10-year yield is higher by two basis points at 1.60 per cent.

Sterling soars...

Growth in the UK's manufacturing sector smashed expectations in August – suggesting the manufacturers are weathering the Brexit storm and giving a boost to the beleaguered pound.

Markit's purchasing managers index (PMI) for the sector jumped to 53.3 in August, well about the 50 mark that separates growth from contraction. That's not only the highest in 10 months, but way above expectations of 49.

It's also a huge turnaround from the previous month, when the UK manufacturing PMI slumped to its lowest level in more than three years.

So impressive was the figure, the pound up almost one per cent against the dollar, to $1.3263, its highest since the beginning of August.

Meanwhile, China's Manufacturing PMI for August came in at its highest reading since October 2014. Not all good news however, non-manufacturing PMI came in at 53.5, its weakest level in three months.

Stocks to watch

Gaming stocks are performing well in the pre-market after data showed Macau gaming revenue is positive for the first time in more than two years.

Gross gaming revenue edged up 1.1 per cent last month to 18.8bn patacas (£1.8bn).

Wynn Resorts (which makes around 60 per cent of its revenue in Macau); Sands China; Galaxy Entertainment; and SJM Holdings are all riding the wave.

Energy stocks will be in the limelight again after oil gave up its overnight gains.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate hit $45.08 a barrel in early trade, but it is now down 0.3 per cent near $44.60.

The falls add to losses yesterday after US inventories showed supplies remain higher than was anticipated.

Fast food giant McDonald's is also in the news after Mike Andres, the president of McDonald's USA, announced his retirment after 30 years at the company.

Andres all but rescued McDonald's last year with his plan for an all-day breakfast menu.

Companies reporting today

Campbell Soup, bag fashion brand Vera Bradley, and construction supplier Joy Global report ahead of the opening bell.

After the close we'll hear from commutations tech firm Broadcom, Canadian athletic apparel retailer Lululemon Athletica, and gun maker Smith & Wesson.

In economic news

A busy day for economic data. Following on from PMIs around the rest of the world the US has its own out too.

Productivity and initial jobless claims will be released before the open and ahead of the latest US manufacturing PMI at 2:45pm London time.

Shortly after construction spending and ISM manufacturing will be announced.

The latest US vehicle sales will be reported throughout the day.

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