US Futures Barely in the Black as Alcoa Kicks Off Earnings Season With Mixed Results

U.S. stock futures were holding onto meager gains Thursday after metals producer Alcoa ( AA ) unofficially started off the earnings season with a beat on earnings and a miss on sales.

At 8:30 a.m. E.T., jobless claims in the week ended April 4 are expected to have increased to 285,000 from 268,000 the preceding week, in the consensus range between 275,000 to 325,000, according to data compiled by Econoday.

At 10:00 a.m., wholesale inventories for February are expected to have increased 0.2% compared to the 0.3% increase in January. The consensus range is for inventories to be unchanged to 0.6% higher.

Alcoa shares were lower by nearly 3% in recent premarket trade.

Other notable equities movers included social video games maker Zynga ( ZNGA ), off by over 8% after saying CEO Don Mattrick will leave the company and will be replaced by founder and chairman Mark Pincus who will return to the CEO role. Walgreens Boots Alliance ( WBA ) added 1% after adjusted fiscal Q2 earnings topped estimates, even as sales fell short.

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