U.S. stock index futures fell sharply on Wednesday, the first trading day of the new year, as disappointing economic data from China hampered global risk appetite.
At around 8:20 a.m. ET on Wednesday, Dow Jones Industrial Average futures pointed to a drop of 401.46 points at the open. Futures on the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 also pointed to a weak open.
Shares of tech-related companies were among the worst performers in the premarket. Netflix’s stock dropped 2.9 percent after an analyst at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey said subscriber growth — a key metric for the company — fell short of expectations in the fourth quarter. Chipmakers Nvidia and Advanced Micro Devices both dropped more than 2.5 percent while Micron’s stock pulled back more than 3 percent.
Futures also fell after The New York Times reported that U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer has told friends and associates he wants to prevent President Donald Trump from accepting “empty promises” from China on the trade front. The report also says Lighthizer has warned Trump that additional tariffs may be needed to get meaningful concessions from the Chinese. The two countries are currently negotiating a trade deal after exchanging tariffs on billions of dollars worth of their goods.
Read more in CNBC.