* Focus on Fed press meet on banks stress test
* 3M falls after RBC downgrade
* PepsiCo rises after results beat
* Futures down: Dow 0.34%, S&P 0.33%, Nasdaq 0.33% (Adds quote, details; Updates prices)
By Medha Singh
July 9 (Reuters) - Wall Street was set for a lower open on Tuesday as investors fretted over a hit to earnings from the protracted U.S.-China trade dispute and lowered expectations of a big rate cut by the Federal Reserve later this month.
In the latest indication of the U.S.-China trade dispute hurting businesses, German chemicals giant BASF warned of a 30% fall in adjusted annual profit.
A downgrade of 3M Co to “sector perform” by RBC Capital Markets on macro pressures from China, auto and electronics added to the downbeat sentiment. The industrial conglomerate’s shares fell 1.6% in premarket trade.
China-exposed stocks slipped, with Boeing Co, the single largest U.S. exporter to China, dipping 0.2% ahead of release of its orders and deliveries for the second quarter. Caterpillar Inc fell 0.6%.
Chipmakers, including Qualcomm Inc, Advanced Micro Devices Inc, Intel Corp and Nvidia Corp , were down between 0.5% and 0.9%.
Stocks have retreated from their record closing highs since a robust June jobs report on Friday tempered expectations of an aggressive 50 basis point rate cut by the Fed.
“There is certainly nervousness over ... the fact that no (trade) agreement has been reached nor seems that close and that the recent jobs report calls into question how quickly the Fed is likely to lower rates,” said Rick Meckler, partner, Cherry Lane Investments in New Vernon, New Jersey.
“Without the two items being favorably resolved, it’s hard for the market to push to even higher levels when it has gained already so much this year.”
The market had expected a 75% chance of a 25-basis-point cut and a 25% chance of a 50-basis-point cut a week ago, according to CME Group’s FedWatch tool. That stood at 95% and 5%, respectively, on Tuesday.
Focus this week will be on Fed chief Jerome Powell’s remarks at his two-day testimony before the Congress, starting Wednesday. Also due on Wednesday is the central bank’s June policy meeting minutes.
At 8:27 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were down 92 points, or 0.34%. S&P 500 e-minis were down 9.75 points, or 0.33% and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 26 points, or 0.33%.
Banking stocks will be watched on Tuesday as the Fed holds a conference to discuss the effectiveness of its stress tests for large lenders.
Network gear maker Cisco Systems Inc dropped 1.3% on deal to buy optical component maker Acacia Communications Inc for $2.84 billion in cash. Acacia shares soared 37.4%.
PepsiCo Inc gained 0.9% after the beverage maker beat analysts’ estimates for quarterly revenue and profit, benefiting from demand for its sodas and chips, as well as its sparkling waters.
Second-quarter earnings is expected to start in earnest next week, with Citigroup kicking off results for big U.S. lenders on Monday and FANG-member Netflix Inc reporting later in the week.
Profits at S&P 500 companies are expected to dip 0.2% from a year earlier, according to Refinitiv IBES data. (Reporting by Medha Singh and Manas Mishra in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)