Monday 21, May

7 things to know before the opening bell

Last month's report was underwhelming. The US economy added just 103,000 jobs in March, fewer than it had in previous months, and well below economist expectations.

Economists polled by FactSet expect 190,000 new jobs for April.

2. US-China talks: Trade talks between the United States and China are wrapping up in Beijing.

The United States and China have threatened recently to impose tariffs on tens of billions of dollars of each other's goods, and both sides are hoping enough progress will be made in the negotiations to dial down the tension.

Analysts welcomed their willingness to talk. Fears of a potential trade war between the world's two biggest economies have weighed down on global markets in recent months.

"Continual talks and negotiations between the Trump administration officials and Chinese officials may ease tensions," said Lukman Otunuga, a research analyst at FXTM.

3. Xerox U-turn: A couple of days ago, Xerox said its CEO was resigning. Now, it says he's staying put.

In a statement late Thursday night, Xerox (XRX) said that a deal with activist investors Carl Icahn and Darwin Deason for its CEO and most of its board of directors to leave had expired.

The US printer and copier company accused Deason of failing to fulfill part of the bargain, which required him to end litigation against Xerox directors. Icahn and Deason quickly fired back at the Xerox board.

4. Volkswagen woes: The US government unveiled charges on Thursday against Martin Winterkorn, the former CEO of Volkswagen (VLKAF), that stem from company's diesel scandal.

Volkswagen admitted in late 2015 that it fitted as many as 11 million diesel vehicles worldwide with software that could cheat emissions tests. Winterkorn has denied wrongdoing.

News of the charges coincided with Volkswagen's annual shareholder meeting. Investor reaction was muted on Friday, with Volkswagen shares gaining 1% in Frankfurt.

5. Warren Buffett's big weekend: Berkshire Hathaway (BRKA) is hosting its annual shareholder meeting this weekend.

The meeting is an opportunity for Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger to comment on the company's many investments. They'll praise — or criticize — the companies they care about.

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6. Global market overview: US stock futures were lower.

Alibaba (BABA) and Newell Brands (NWL) are set to release earnings before the open in New York.

European markets were mixed, while stocks in Asia finished the session mostly lower.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed flat on Thursday. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq shed 0.2%.

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7. Coming this week:

Friday — Alibaba (BABA), Newell Brands (NWL) earnings; Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder weekend kicks off; Jobs report


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