US futures drop on underwhelming updates from tech companies

Apple Inc tumbled 4 per cent premarket after it reported the steepest drop in quarterly iPhone sales in two years due to the late launch of new 5G phones. — Reuters pic
Apple Inc tumbled 4 per cent premarket after it reported the steepest drop in quarterly iPhone sales in two years due to the late launch of new 5G phones. — Reuters pic

NEW YORK, Oct 30 — US stock index futures tumbled today as dismal business updates from technology mega-caps including Apple Inc fuelled investor worries, adding to their concerns about a surge in coronavirus cases.

Apple Inc tumbled 4 per cent premarket after it reported the steepest drop in quarterly iPhone sales in two years due to the late launch of new 5G phones.

Amazon.com Inc fell 1.4 per cent after it forecast a jump in costs related to Covid-19, while Facebook Inc shed 2 per cent as it warned of a tougher 2021.

Google parent Alphabet Inc, however, climbed 7 per cent after it beat estimates for quarterly sales as businesses resumed advertising.

Shares of the technology heavyweights had jumped ahead of tech results yesterday, helping the S&P 500 close higher.

Still, the benchmark index is set to wrap up its worst week since mid-June, while Wall Street’s fear gauge held at a 20-week high, also on fears of a contested election next week.

Ahead of the final weekend before Election Day on Tuesday, President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden will barnstorm across battleground states in the Midwest where the coronavirus pandemic has exploded anew.

Trump has consistently trailed Biden in national polls for months, but polls in the most competitive states have shown a closer race.

At 06.13am ET, Dow E-minis were down 238 points, or 0.9 per cent, S&P e-minis fell 28.75 points or 0.87 per cent and Nasdaq 100 E-minis were down 140 points, or 1.23 per cent.

Third-quarter earnings season is past its halfway mark and about 84.8 per cent of S&P 500 companies have beaten estimates for earnings, according to Refinitiv data. Overall, profit is expected to tumble 13.4 per cent from a year ago.

Twitter Inc slumped 14.2 per cent after the micro-blogging site reported fewer users than expected and warned the US election could impact ad revenue. — Reuters

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