April 4, 2017 / 12:47 PM / 4 months ago

US STOCKS-Wall St set to open lower, investors wary of Trump-Xi meet

3 Min Read

* Trump-Xi meeting set for Thursday and Friday

* Investors appear averse to risk assets

* Bank of America down on Citigroup downgrade

* Futures down: Dow 58 pts, S&P 8.75 pts, Nasdaq 22.75 pts (Adds details, comments, updates prices)

By Yashaswini Swamynathan

April 4 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks looked set to open lower on Tuesday as investors fretted over the ability of President Donald Trump to deliver on his policy plans, and the outcome of his potentially tense meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping later this week.

Trump, known to have a protectionist stance on trade, has held out the possibility of using trade as a lever to secure China's cooperation against North Korea when he meets Jinping on Thursday and Friday.

The major U.S. stock indexes have hit record highs on Trump's promises of tax cuts, looser regulations and higher infrastructure spending.

However, his administration's recent struggles to push legislation through Congress, particularly a healthcare reform bill, has raised questions whether they could deliver its pro-business economic stimulus.

Those doubts came back to the forefront on Monday when some U.S. states accused Trump's administration of illegally suspending energy efficiency standards, while Democrats amassed enough support to block a confirmation vote for Trump's Supreme Court nominee.

"Traders are keeping a close political watch on the various upcoming events and are not likely to increase risk ahead of what may turn out to be a critical Trump, Xi meeting," Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial wrote in a note.

Dow e-minis were down 58 points, or 0.28 percent at 8:31 a.m. ET (1231 GMT), with 22,637 contracts changing hands.

S&P 500 e-minis were down 8.75 points, or 0.37 percent, with 145,320 contracts traded.

Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 22.75 points, or 0.42 percent, on volume of 28,939 contracts.

Shares of Bank of America fell 1.7 percent to $23.19 in premarket trading on Tuesday after Citigroup downgraded the stock to "neutral" from "buy".

Nvidia was down 3.1 percent at $105 after Pacific Crest downgraded the chipmaker's stock to "underweight" from "sector weight".

Paratek Pharmaceuticals surged 36 percent to $25.30 after its lead antibiotic drug succeeded in a study. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D'Souza)

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