MARKET SNAPSHOT: Dow Poised To Slide Again, After Logging Biggest 2-week Fall In Nearly A Year

By Victor Reklaitis, MarketWatch Features Dow Jones Newswires

Analyst: 'Market sentiment is fairly negative'

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U.S. stocks pointed to a dip at the open Monday, putting the Dow Jones Industrial Average on track to deepen its two-week drop.

Dow futures fell by 17 points, or 0.1%, to 21,662.00, while S&P 500 futures shed 2.55 points, or 0.1%, to 2,424.25. Nasdaq-100 futures gave up 11 points, or 0.2%, to 5,790.25.

"With earnings season coming to an end, there is not much to be bullish about right now," said Richard Perry, a Hantec Markets analyst, in a note Monday.

"Market sentiment is fairly negative with geopolitical risk still elevated on the Korean Peninsula," Perry said, adding that "the political risk of Trump's presidency remains a driving factor."

A new cycle of escalation near the Korean Peninsula looked set to begin as the U.S. and South Korea on Monday kicked off annual military exercises (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/tensions-expected-to-rise-as-us-south-korea-start-annual-war-games-2017-08-20) that have a history of enraging North Korea.

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President Donald Trump is due to lay out a path for U.S. strategy in Afghanistan (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/trump-to-announce-new-strategy-for-us-in-afghanistan-2017-08-20) in a nationally televised speech Monday night. On Tuesday, Trump is scheduled to speak at a campaign-style rally in Phoenix, Ariz., as he tries to move on from his much-criticized response to the white-supremacist violence in Charlottesville, Va.

Last week, the Dow (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/dow-set-to-fight-for-direction-but-flirts-with-biggest-two-week-drop-in-nearly-a-year-2017-08-18) lost 0.8%, leaving it down 1.9% over two weeks, for its largest two-week percentage decline since mid-September. The S&P dropped 0.7% for the week, and the Nasdaq Composite gave up 0.6%.

Other markets: Oil futures edged lower, while gold futures and the ICE U.S. Dollar Index inched higher. European equities lost ground (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/fiat-maersk-shares-shine-in-lackluster-european-stock-market-2017-08-21), while Asian markets closed mixed (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/australia-japan-lead-asian-market-decliners-2017-08-20).

Deal news: Shares in Sempra Energy(SRE) are likely to see active trading following news the San Diego Gas & Electric parent has reached a deal to buy Oncor for $9.45 billion, swooping in to snatch the power-transmission company (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/sempra-outbids-buffetts-berkshire-with-945-billion-deal-for-oncor-2017-08-21) away from Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc.(BRKA)

In European deal news, French oil giant Total SA(TOT) (TOT) has agreed to acquire Danish conglomerate A.P. Moeller-Maersk A/S's (MAERSK-B.KO) (MAERSK-B.KO) oil unit for $4.5 billion (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/total-buys-maersk-oil-unit-in-745-billion-deal-2017-08-21), the latest sign activity is returning to the sector following a three-year slump in oil prices.

U.S.-listed shares for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV(FCA.MI) (FCA.MI) traded 2% higher in premarket action after China's Great Wall Motor Co. (2333.HK) reportedly expressed interest in buying the Italian-American car maker.

Economic news: A July figure for the Chicago Federal Reserve's national activity index is slated to hit at 8:30 a.m. Eastern Time.

Check out:MarketWatch's Economic Calendar (http://www.marketwatch.com/economy-politics/calendars/economic)

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

August 21, 2017 05:44 ET (09:44 GMT)