US stock futures lag as relief over Evergrande bond payment fails to outweigh downbeat tech earnings

US stock futures lag as relief over Evergrande bond payment fails to outweigh downbeat tech earnings
  • Nasdaq and S&P futures dipped Friday as Snap and Intel earnings reports soured sentiment.
  • Asian and European stocks rose after Chinese property giant Evergrande made an $83.5 million bond interest payment on time.
  • "That should give a temporary reprieve to the China financial-system contagion fears," an analyst said.

US stock futures dipped on Friday as disappointing tech earnings soured the mood, even as European and Asian equities gained on relief that Evergrande had made a looming bond interest payment.

The troubled Chinese property giant wired funds to make an $83.5 million bond interest payment on Thursday, just ahead of deadline, according to reports by state-backed Chinese media and Reuters.

But third-quarter earnings from Snap dampened investor spirits in the US, after the instant-messaging app provider said Apple's privacy changes led to a fall in its digital advertising business.

Futures on the Dow Jones and S&P 500 were about flat, while those on the Nasdaq were 0.3% lower as of 6:15 a.m. ET, suggesting a mixed open later Friday.

Shares in Snap, which reported results after the market close, sank 21% in premarket trading. Other stocks with digital ad businesses also lost ground, with Facebook and Twitter both down about 4% premarket. Google parent Alphabet and Pinterest dropped 2% and 3% respectively.


Adding to the tech stock gloom was chipmaker Intel, whose shares fell 9% after a weak quarter that missed analysts' revenue estimates. Investors have enjoyed a mostly positive third-quarter earnings season this week, with most companies booking revenue above targets.

Official US data Thursday showed initial jobless claims fell to another pandemic-era low last week, coming in at 290,000 compared with an expected 300,000. That and updates on existing home sales and business conditions
were seen as reviving trade on a Federal Reserve taper.

The Fed is expected to reveal its plans for starting to cut asset purchases in November. It said last month that if economic progress continues, a "moderation in the pace of asset purchase may soon be warranted."

In Asia, investors greeted Evergrande's surprise interest payment with relief, as its 30-day grace period was set to expire Saturday. However, the property company still faces several other offshore bond payment obligations.

"That should give a temporary reprieve to the China financial system contagion fears, although I note that Evergrande has another grace period payment due on the 29th of October of $45.17 million," Jeffrey Halley, a senior market analyst at Oanda, said in a note.


"Still, if they've managed to scrape together the funds for this one, it is reasonable to surmise that next week's will also be met."

Hong Kong's Hang Seng rose 0.4%, Tokyo's Nikkei rose 0.3%, while the Shanghai Composite lost 0.3%.

European stocks opened higher, tracking gains in Asia.

The Euro Stoxx 600 added 0.5%. London's FTSE 100 was up 0.4%, and Frankfurt's DAX moved 0.5% higher.

Oil prices fell slightly, after a report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration that winter in the US is expected to be warmer than average weighed on the market. Still, Brent crude and West Texas Intermediate were trading near multiyear highs at $84.76 and $82.67 a barrel, respectively.


Data releases for the day include the flash Purchasing Managers Index from around the world and UK retail sales for September. Honeywell and American Express are due to report third-quarter earnings.

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