Market Watch: Stock Futures Edge Lower Ahead of Inflation Report

Stock futures edged lower on Wednesday as investors turned their attention to an impending inflation report slated for later this week.

Futures linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average saw a slight decline of 40 points, equivalent to 0.1%. Similarly, S&P 500 futures retreated by 0.08%, while Nasdaq 100 futures dipped by 0.2%.

During after-hours trading, online marketplace eBay experienced a notable surge of over 3% following its announcement of a quarterly dividend increase and a plan to allocate an additional $2 billion towards buybacks. Conversely, Urban Outfitters witnessed a 10% drop after falling short of expectations on both revenue and earnings in the fourth quarter.

S&P 500 and Nasdaq close with modest gains
S&P 500 and Nasdaq close with modest gains; Dow falls for second consecutive day.

In Tuesday’s regular trading session, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite closed the day with modest gains, up by 0.17% and 0.37%, respectively. Conversely, the 30-stock Dow registered its second consecutive day of decline, down by 0.25%.

Although the S&P 500 and the Dow have retreated from their recent highs achieved late last week, investors are exercising caution before aggressively increasing their equity positions.

Drew Pettit, director of U.S. equity strategy at Citi, shared his perspective on CNBC’s “Closing Bell: Overtime,” advising against chasing the market at this juncture. He noted, “A lot of good news is getting priced in – we are actually trading up even though the reporting season really hasn’t been great; we really haven’t had a lot of broad beats and broad raises.”

Stock market conditions
Expert warns against aggressive equity moves; advises patience amid uncertain market conditions.

Pettit recommended savoring the current momentum in equities while exercising patience for a more opportune moment to adopt a more aggressive stance.

Looking ahead to Wednesday, investors anticipate earnings reports from retailer TJX Cos. and pharmaceutical company Viatris before the market opens. Salesforce is scheduled to release its quarterly figures after the close.

On the economic front, market participants await wholesale inventory data on Wednesday. However, the primary focus remains on Thursday’s release of the personal consumption expenditure reading for January, as it serves as the Federal Reserve’s preferred gauge of inflation.

Sajda Parveen
Sajda Parveen
Sajda Praveen is a market expert. She has over 6 years of experience in the field and she shares her expertise with readers. You can reach out to her at [email protected]
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