Bank earnings; U.S. dollar slips; China trade booms

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1. Bank earnings galore: Citigroup (C), JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Wells Fargo (WFC) will report first quarter earnings on Thursday.

Banking stocks soared following the election of President Trump, but they began to lose momentum in March.

Still, analysts say banks should be in line to benefit from rising interest rates.

Last week, JPMorgan (JPM) CEO Jamie Dimon struck an optimistic note in his annual letter to shareholders, bragging about his bank's monster balance sheet.

Wells Fargo (WFC), meanwhile, is still feeling the effects of its fake accounts debacle. The $110 million settlement with wronged customers agreed in March might help it move beyond the scandal.

2. China trade grows: China posted stunning growth in trade last month, beating analyst expectations by a mile.

"The latest trade data point to buoyant external demand but suggest that domestic demand may have started to cool," said Julian Evans-Pritchard, China economist at Capital Economics.

Exports grew 22% in yuan terms over the previous year in March. Imports also grew by 26%, but that was actually slower than the 34% average increase posted in January and February.

3. OPEC keeps cutting: New data from the International Energy Agency show that OPEC countries are sticking with an agreement reached with other producers aimed at cutting production.

The oil cartel is now working on a proposal to extend the production cuts beyond June.

"At half time in the six-month deal, OPEC achieved an average 99% of its target after Saudi Arabia -- along with Kuwait, Qatar and Angola -- cut by more than agreed," the agency, which monitors energy trends for the world's richest countries, said in its report.

Oil dropped 0.4% to just below $53 per barrel.

4. Global market overview: U.S. stock futures were lower Thursday ahead of the long weekend. U.S. markets are closed Friday.

The dollar and U.S. Treasury yields dropped Wednesday after President Trump told the Wall Street Journal that the dollar was "getting too strong." The dollar continued to fall early Thursday.

European markets opened lower, while Asian markets ended the session mixed.

The Japanese yen and gold, seen as safe haven assets by investors, both strengthened.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed 0.3% lower on Wednesday, while the S&P 500 shed 0.4% and the Nasdaq declined 0.5%.

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5. Economics: Initial U.S. jobless claims for the week of April 8 will be reported at 7:30 a.m. ET.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics is set to release its producer price index reports for March at 8:30 a.m. ET.

The University of Michigan will release its consumer sentiment data for April at 9 a.m. ET.

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6. Coming this week:

Thursday -- JPMorgan (JPM), Wells Fargo (WFC) and Citigroup (C) release first quarter earnings
Friday -- New York International Auto Show kicks off

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