Stocks seek direction as Biden holds climate summit

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U.S. stock futures slipped in early trading a day after the major averages got back on track following two days of selling. 

Dow Jones Industrial Average futures were down 25 points, or 0.07% while S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq futures were weaker by 0.13% and 0.18%, respectively. 

The early selling comes as President Biden holds a virtual conference with 40 world leaders, including Chinese President Xi Jinping, where he will pledge to lower U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by up to 52% from 2005 levels before the end of the decade. 

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In stocks, automakers were among the groups in focus as Biden gets set to unveil his climate actions. 

Meanwhile, Credit Suisse Group said it could raise around $2 billion through the sale of new shares in order to shore up its balance sheet following the Archegos Capital Management debacle, which resulted in a 4.4 billion Swiss franc charge. The bank expects an additional 600 million Swiss franc charge in the current quarter. 

American Airlines Group Inc. loss in the three months through March narrowed to $1.25 billion, from $2.24 billion a year earlier, as it posted a fifth straight quarterly deficit. The airline sees signs of demand recovering during the current three-month period. 

Rival Southwest Airlines Co. earned $116 million last quarter, boosted by $1 billion in federal money that offset labor costs. The company forecasts its cash burn will slow to between $2 million and $4 million per day in April as more Americans get vaccinated and begin to travel.

Elsewhere, Homebuilder D.R. Horton Inc. reported quarterly profit nearly doubled from a year ago as low mortgage rates and increased demand for housing in the socially distant suburbs amid the pandemic boosted sales. 

In commodities, West Texas Intermediate crude oil fell 28 cents to $61.07 per barrel and gold dropped $7.60 to $1,785.50 an ounce. 

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Overseas markets were mostly higher. 

European markets rallied across the board with Britain’s FTSE 100 up 0.05%, Germany’s DAX 30 gaining 0.48% and France’s CAC 40 advancing 0.69%. 

In Asia, China’s Shanghai Composite index slipped 0.23% while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index and Japan’s Nikkei 225 climbed 0.47% and 2.38%, respectively. 

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