May 8, 2019 / 12:54 PM / 11 days ago

US STOCKS-Wall Street set for lower open as trade talks reach crucial stage

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* Tariff-sensitive Boeing, Caterpillar, chipmakers fall

* Electronic Arts gains after 4th-qtr revenue beat

* Chesapeake falls after bigger net loss

* Futures down: Dow 0.44%, S&P 0.50%, Nasdaq 0.60% (Adds comment, updates prices)

By Amy Caren Daniel

May 8 (Reuters) - Wall Street was set to extend a two-day losing streak on Wednesday, as investors fretted over the outcome of a crucial round of U.S.-China trade negotiations.

Months of talks between the two sides were upended after U.S. President Donald Trump on Sunday threatened to raise tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods to 25% from 10% on Friday, retaliating against last-minute reversals by China.

China had deleted its commitments to change laws to resolve core complaints that caused the United States to launch a trade war, sources told Reuters.

In a last-ditch bid, Chinese Vice Premier Liu He is due to visit Washington on Thursday and Friday for trade talks.

“The breakdown in talks has really caught the markets off-guard,” said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at Oanda in London.

“It seemed a deal was just widely accepted and basically priced in, now we’re left wondering whether it will happen at all and what impact more tariffs will have on the global economy and markets. The next few days could be massive.”

Tariff-sensitive industrial bellwethers Caterpillar Inc and Boeing Co slipped about 0.4% in premarket trading.

Chipmakers, which get a large chunk of their revenue from China, also fell.

The spike in tensions between the world’s two largest economies has renewed fears of a global economic slowdown and forced investors to seek low-risk assets such as government bonds and the Japanese yen.

The main indexes have posted two consecutive sessions of declines this week and the losses have put the benchmark S&P 500 more than 2% away from its record high of 2,954.13 hit last week.

Adding to the jitters was Chinese trade data that showed solid imports but an unexpected fall in April exports, painting a mixed picture of the economy.

At 8:19 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were down 114 points, or 0.44%. S&P 500 e-minis were down 14.5 points, or 0.5% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 46.25 points, or 0.6%.

Shares of Nvidia Corp, Micron Technology Inc and Advanced Micro Devices Inc were down about 1%.

The broader Philadelphia chip index has declined 4% so far this week, and is on pace to post its biggest percentage weekly loss since Dec. 21.

With results entering the final stretch, first-quarter earnings are now expected to rise 1.2%, a sharp improvement from the 2.3% decline expected at the start of the season.

Of the 414 S&P companies that have reported so far, about 75% have beaten profit estimates, according to Refinitiv data.

Electronic Arts Inc jumped 6.9% after the videogame maker posted better-than-expected quarterly revenue, riding on the popularity of its battle royale game, “Apex Legends”.

Lyft Inc fell 3.1% after the ride services company forecast that its losses would peak this year as it controlled expenses and got more revenue from each customer, days ahead of rival Uber’s IPO.

Chesapeake Energy Corp dropped 4.7% after the oil and gas producer’s first-quarter net loss widened, hit by a fall in production and lower crude prices. (Reporting by Amy Caren Daniel in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Shounak Dasgupta)

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