Morning Brief: Starbucks debuts in Milan; Howard Schultz addresses speculation of presidential run

Thursday, September 6, 2018

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What to watch today

On Thursday, the market’s attention will shift to the U.S. labor market with ADP’s report on private payroll growth and the weekly report on initial jobless claims both set for release in the morning. Economists expect that private payroll growth totaled 200,000 during August, with this report coming just one day before Friday’s official jobs report. Elsewhere on the economic calendar on Thursday, the August read on service sector activity from Markit Economics as well as the Institute for Supply Management’s gauge on non-manufacturing economic activity will also be released. Factory orders for July are also set to be published.

And on the earnings side, the week’s lone report from the S&P 500 will come after the market close when Broadcom (AVGO) reports results. Other companies reporting results Thursday should include Barnes & Noble (BKS), GameStop (GME), Five Below (FIVE), and Lands’ End (LE).

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Top news

Starbucks makes its debut in Milan, the place that inspired Howard Schultz: Starbucks (SBUX) will open its first store in Milan, Italy, this week, in the coffee mecca that inspired the company as we know it today. [Yahoo Finance]

Is Howard Schultz eyeing a White House run?: When Howard Schultz stepped down from the board and his role as executive chairman of Starbucks in June, there was speculation that he might be eyeing a presidential run in 2020. In an interview ahead of the opening of Starbucks’s Milan Reserve Roastery, Yahoo Finance asked Schultz what his plans are now that the summer is almost over. During that same interview, Schultz also said that the U.S. and China should work to find common ground amid ongoing trade tensions. [Yahoo Finance]

FBI probing Amex foreign-exchange pricing: The Federal Bureau of Investigation has launched a probe into pricing practices within American Express Co.’s (AXP) foreign-exchange unit, according to people familiar with the matter. The investigation is in its early stages and is focused on whether the foreign-exchange international payments department misrepresented pricing to clients in order to win their business, the people said. [The Wall Street Journal]

CBS and National Amusements in talks to settle litigation: CBS Corp. (CBS) is in settlement talks with Shari Redstone and her family’s holding company National Amusements Inc over a litigation for the control of the broadcaster, a source familiar with the matter said. [Reuters]

Major health-industry deals move closer to approval: The U.S. Department of Justice is on track to soon approve the acquisition of pharmacy-benefit manager Express Scripts Holding Co. (ESRX) by health insurer Cigna Corp. (CI), as well as CVS Health Corp.’s (CVS) takeover of insurer Aetna Inc. (AET), said a person familiar with the matter. The two deals stand to reshape the insurance and pharmacy industries. [Bloomberg]

Bitcoin falls off a cliff again: Cryptocurrencies dropped sharply for the second time in less than 24 hours, sinking toward a nine-month low amid concern that broader adoption of digital assets will take longer than some anticipated. Bitcoin (BTC-USD), the largest cryptocurrency, tumbled as much as 9.8%, according to Bloomberg composite pricing. [Bloomberg]

For more of the latest news, go to Yahoo Finance

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, left, accompanied by Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey are sworn in before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on ‘Foreign Influence Operations and Their Use of Social Media Platforms’ on Capitol Hill, Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)