U.S. Market Futures Lower with Global Trend and Fed Uncertainty

U.S. stock futures are pointing lower in pre-market trading for Thursday, May 19. The Dow Futures are down -64.00 points to 17,415.0. The S&P 500 Futures are down -6.75 points to 2,034.75. The Nasdaq Futures are lower at 4,316.75 for a loss of -15.50. The Russell Futures are showing a loss of -5.60 points at 1,094.9.

In overnight trading in the Eastern Hemisphere, stocks in Asia were mostly lower. In China, the Shanghai Composite is down at 2,807.33 for a loss of -0.18 points or -0.01 percent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index is down at 19,694.33 for a loss of -132.08 points or -0.67 percent. In Japan, the Nikkei is higher at 16,646.66 for a gain of 1.97 points or 0.01 percent. In India, the S&P BSE Sensex is down -304.89 points or -1.19 percent to 25,399.72 and the NSE Nifty is down -86.75 points or -1.10 percent to 7,783.40. The Asia Dow is also lower at 2,564.19 for a loss of -29.72 points or -1.15 percent. In Europe the FTSE 100 is at 6,082.46 for a loss of -83.34 points or -1.35 percent. The FTSE 250 is at 16,753.88 for a loss of -127.36 points or -0.75 percent. France’s CAC 40 is down at 4,280.12 for a loss of -39.18 points or -0.91 percent. Germany’s DAX is also lower at 9,817.92 for a loss of -125.31 points or -1.26 percent. The Europe Dow is lower at 1,513.59 for a loss of -22.85 points or -1.49 percent.

Thursday’s Factors and Events

 On Thursday, jobless claims reported by the Commerce Department will be on close watch after a hawkish tone from the Federal Reserve’s April meeting minutes Wednesday showed the Fed is on the verge of raising rates in either June or September. Also reported on Thursday will be the Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook Survey, the Chicago Fed National Activity Index, leading indicators from The Conference Board, the Fed’s balance sheet and the money supply report. Stanley Fisher and William Dudley will also be giving Federal Reserve speeches.

Retail stocks will continue to be on watch as earnings and outlooks in the sector have been reportedly lower. In the Dow Jones Industrial Average, Wal-Mart will report earnings on Thursday. Analysts are expecting revenue of $113.2 billion and earnings per share of $0.88. On Wednesday the stock traded lower, down -1.96 points or -3.01 percent to $63.14.

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Source: Google Finance.

Wednesday’s Activity

 U.S. stocks traded mixed on Wednesday as the Federal Reserve’s April meeting minutes were the main focus for the day. On Wednesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower at 17,526.62 for a loss of -3.36 points or -0.02 percent. The S&P 500 Index was higher at 2,047.63 for a gain of 0.42 points or 0.02 percent. The Nasdaq Composite Index was also higher at 4,739.12 for a gain of 23.39 points or 0.50 percent. Volatility in U.S. stocks was high as investors speculated over the timing of the Federal Reserve’s next rate increase. Given the current economic environment and economic challenges in both the U.S. and globally it appears the Fed will be cautious in its next rate move to minimize global disruption and focus on the key monetary policy targets in the U.S.

In the U.S. on Wednesday, other notable index closes included the small-cap Russell 2000, higher for the day at 1,102.95 for a gain of 5.28 points or 0.48 percent; the S&P 600 closing at 676.19 for a gain of 3.53 points or 0.52 percent; the S&P 400 Mid-Cap Index closing at 1,436.15 for a loss of -2.66 points or -0.18 percent; the Russell 3000 closing at 1,204.14 for a gain of 0.40 points or 0.03 percent; and the Dow Jones U.S. Select Dividend Index which closed at 576.73 for a loss of -4.43 points or -0.76 percent.

Julie Young

[email protected]

Julie Young is a Senior Market Reporter and Analyst

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