Futures Pointing To Mixed Open On Wall Street
After ending the previous session mixed, stocks may turn in another lackluster performance in early trading on Wednesday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a mixed open for the markets, with the Dow futures down by 23 points and the Nasdaq futures up by 20 points.
Traders may be reluctant to make significant moves ahead of Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s live-streamed speech at the Jackson Hole economic symposium.
Powell’s speech, which is scheduled to begin before the start of trading on Thursday, is likely to be closely watched for clues about the outlook for monetary policy.
Analysts have suggested Powell will signal an increased tolerance for higher inflation, with some predicting he will call for a shift to “average inflation” targeting rather than the long-standing 2 percent target.
Uncertainty about the near-term outlook for the markets may also keep some traders on the sidelines after the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 climbed to new record closing highs on Tuesday.
In U.S. economic news, the Commerce Department released a report showing new orders for U.S. manufactured durable goods spiked by much more than expected in the month of July.
The Commerce Department said durable goods orders skyrocketed by 11.2 percent in July after surging up by a revised 7.7 percent in June.
Economists had expected durable goods orders to increase by 4.3 percent compared to the 7.6 percent jump that had been reported for the previous month.
The bigger than expected leap in durable goods orders was primarily due to a sharp increase in orders for transportation equipment, which soared by 35.6 percent.
Excluding the substantial increase in orders for transportation equipment, durable goods orders rose by a much more modest 2.4 percent in July after climbing by 4.0 percent in June. The increase still exceeded estimates for 2.0 percent growth.
While the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 climbed to new record closing highs during trading on Tuesday, the Dow moved to the downside over the course of the session after reaching a six-month intraday high in early trading.
The Dow climbed well off its worst levels of the day but still finished the session down 60.02 points or 0.2 percent at 28,248.44. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq advanced 86.75 points or 0.8 percent to 11,466.47 and the S&P 500 rose 12.34 points or 0.4 percent to 3,443.62.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower during trading on Wednesday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index closed just below the unchanged line, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index tumbled by 1.3 percent.
Meanwhile, European stocks have moved mostly higher on the day, although the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index has bucked the uptrend and edged down by 0.1 percent. The French CAC 40 Index is up by 0.4 percent and the German DAX Index is up by 0.5 percent.
In commodities trading, crude oil futures are edging down $0.13 to $43.22 a barrel after climbing $0.73 to $43.35 a barrel on Tuesday. Meanwhile, an ounce of gold is trading at $1,911.20, down $11.90 compared to the previous session’s close of $1,923.10. On Tuesday, gold tumbled $16.10.
On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 106.45 yen compared to the 106.39 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Tuesday. Against the euro, the dollar is trading at $1.1777 compared to yesterday’s $1.1835.
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