U.S. equity futures are trading lower ahead of the Wednesday Wall Street session.
The major futures indexes are suggesting a decline of 0.4 percent.
The U.S. has ordered China to close its Houston consulate in order to protect American intellectual property and American’s private information..
China calls the action a provocation that violates international law.
The Associated Press reported that Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said Wednesday that the U.S. had abruptly demanded the previous day that the consulate cease all operations.
He said that China strongly condemns “such an outrageous and unjustified move that will sabotage China-U.S. relations.”
In a statement, the U.S. State Department said:
“We have directed the closure of PRC Consulate General Houston, in order to protect American intellectual property and American’s private information.”
Around the globe, coronavirus infections surged past 15 million on Wednesday.
The United States has the highest number of cases with 3.91 million infections, according to Reuters.
President Trump warned on Tuesday, “It will probably, unfortunately, get worse before it gets better.”
A report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control said the number of coronavirus cases in some states is much higher than has been reported.
Wednesday will mark the busiest day for earnings so far in terms of high-interest names. The main attraction comes in the afternoon when software and services giant Microsoft and electric vehicle producer Tesla post results, along with Mexican fast-casual restaurant chain Chipotle and home appliance maker Whirlpool.
In Europe, London’s FTSE was lower by 0.9 percent, Germany’s DAX declined 0.5 percent and France’s CAC fell 1.2 percent.
In Asian markets, Tokyo’s Nikkei lost 0.6 percent, the Hang Seng in Hong Kong fell 2.3 percent and China’s Shanghai Composite gained 0.4 percent.
Uncertainty over prospects for more financial aid to Americans and U.S. businesses also is casting a shadow, analysts said. The Republican Party and Democrats remain divided over how much support is needed, as states grapple with rebounds in cases that have prompted some local governments to order some businesses to close to help snuff out flare ups of the virus.
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On Wall Street, shares edged higher on Tuesday despite a late stumble that nearly wiped out the market’s gains for the day. The S&P 500 added 0.2 percent for a third straight gain. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.6 percent, while the Nasdaq tumbled 0.8 percent, a day after notching its best day since the end of April and its latest all-time high.
The overall S&P 500 index has rallied back to within 3.9 percent of its record set in February and is back to where it was in early June.
In the commodities markets, the price of benchmark U.S oil gave up 65 cents to $41.26 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. It jumped 2.8 percent to settle at $41.96 a barrel on Tuesday. Brent crude oil, the international standard, lost 59 cents to $43.72 per barrel.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.