Hong Kong bill, more earnings, Powell speech: 3 things to watch for Monday

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US President Donald Trump shows a letter from Chinese President Xi Jinping as he announces an initial trade deal with China at the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC on October 11, 2019.

Nicholas Kamm | AFP | Getty Images

Here are the most important things to know about Monday before you hit the door.

1. Will Trump sign the Hong Kong bill?

The market is on edge regarding the status of U.S.-China trade deal talks and they could get a lot more complicated this weekend or early next week. This week, both chambers of Congress passed a pro-Hong Kong rights bill by near unanimous margins amid crackdowns on protests. Now, the bill has landed on President Donald Trump’s desk. Investors will monitor any signal from the White House as to where the president stands on the bill because his doing so could anger China at this delicate time.

“We have to stand with Hong Kong, but I’m also standing with President Xi,” Trump told Fox News on Friday. He later said he will take “a good look” at the bill.

The U.S. and China are close to finalizing a long-awaited “phase one” trade deal. Beijing has expressed strong opposition to the bill.The stock market is trying to rebound from the first losing week in more than a month.

The president’s unwillingness to commit to the bill drew criticism from Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer.

“For a guy who promised to be tough on China, President Trump’s reliable deference to President Xi is all the more bewildering. Being tough on China when it comes to human rights will also help us win the battle on trade,” Schumer said in a statement on Friday.

2. Earnings from HPE, Palo Alto Networks

Earnings season also starts to wind down as 95% of the S&P 500 companies have already reported.

Investors will get earnings reports from Hewlett Packard Enterprise and cybersecurity company Palo Alto Networks on Monday. Analysts are expecting HPE to report an EPS of 46 cents in the fiscal fourth quarter, a slight increase from 45 cents in the same quarter last year, according to FactSet. The estimate for Palo Alto Networks’ quarterly earnings is $1.03 per share, a decrease from $1.17 in the same period a year ago, FactSet data said.

3. Powell speech

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell is scheduled to speak at the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce annual dinner.

The last time we heard from the chairman was when he delivered congressional testimony on economic outlook a week ago. Powell said the central bank is unlikely to adjust interest rates anytime soon so long as the economy remains on its present path. The Fed cut rates three times this year.

Major events (all times ET):

8:30 a.m. CFNAI Chicago Fed National Activity Index

10:30 a.m. Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey

Major earnings:

HPE (after the bell)

Palo Alto Networks (after the bell)

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