A Peek Into The Markets: US Stock Futures Edge Lower; All Eyes On Jobs Data

Pre-open movers

U.S. stock futures traded slightly lower in early pre-market trade ahead of the major jobs report. Analysts expect nonfarm payrolls rising 175,000 in February following January's increase of 49,000. The unemployment rate is expected to remain unchanged at 6.3%. Investors are awaiting earnings reports from Big Lots, Inc. BIG and Hibbett Sports, Inc. HIBB.

International trade report for January will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET, while data on consumer credit for January will be released at 3:00 p.m. ET. Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Raphael Bostic is set to speak at 3:00 p.m. ET.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 33 points to 30,845.00 while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index futures fell 5.75 points at 3,759.75. Futures for the Nasdaq 100 index fell 41 points to 12,414.00.

The U.S. has the highest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in the world, with total infections in the country exceeding 28,827,140 with around 520,350 deaths. India reported a total of at least 11,173,760 confirmed cases, while Brazil confirmed over 10,793,730 cases.

Oil prices traded higher as Brent crude futures rose 1.7% to trade at $67.89 per barrel, while US WTI crude futures rose 1.5% to trade at $67.89 a barrel. The Baker Hughes North American rig count report for the latest week will be released at 1:00 p.m.

A Peek Into Global Markets

European markets were lower today. The Spanish Ibex Index fell 0.9% and STOXX Europe 600 Index fell 0.7%. The French CAC 40 Index slipped 0.9%, German DAX 30 dropped 0.9% while London's FTSE 100 fell 0.8%. The UK’s Halifax house price index increased 5.2% year-over-year in February. French current account gap increased to EUR 1.6 billion in January from EUR 1.1 billion in December, while trade gap widened to EUR 3.95 billion from EUR 3.57 billion. Factory orders in Germany rose 1.4% in January.

Asian markets traded lower today. Japan’s Nikkei 225 fell 0.23%, China’s Shanghai Composite fell 0.04% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index fell 0.47%. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.7%, while India’s BSE Sensex fell 0.9%. Australian services PMI surged to 58.8 in February from 54.3 in the earlier month.

Broker Recommendation

Morgan Stanley upgraded The Michaels Companies, Inc. MIK from Underweight to Equal-Weight and announced a $22 price target.

Michaels shares fell 0.9% to close at $21.83 on Thursday.

Check out other major ratings here


Breaking News

  • Broadcom Inc AVGO reported better-than-expected earnings and overall sales for its fourth quarter. However, the company’s chip sales came in slightly below analysts’ estimates.
  • Moderna Inc. MRNA and International Business Machines Corp. IBM plan to collaborate on technologies that could help support smarter management of COVID-19 vaccines, including improving supply chain management and real-time tracking of vaccines.
  • Gap Inc GPS reported upbeat earnings for its fourth quarter, while sales missed expectations. The company also said it sees FY21 earnings of $1.20 to $1.35 per share.
  • Costco Wholesale Corporation COST reported weaker-than-expected profit for its second quarter.

Check out other breaking news here

Posted In: A Peek Into The MarketsEarningsNewsEurozoneFuturesSmall CapGlobalPre-Market OutlookMarkets