U.S. Stock Futures: An Early Peek into Monday's Market
Kicking off the week with a quiet start, U.S. stock futures hold promises of a rewarding month-end, fueled by anticipations of the Federal Reserve's policy shift and robust corporate earnings. At 06:30 ET, Dow Futures nudged up by 25 points, demonstrating a 0.1% growth, whereas S&P 500 Futures were 2 points up, also marking a 0.1% increment. However, the Nasdaq 100 Futures slightly lagged, dipping by 7 points or 0.1%.
Impressive Gains for Benchmark Indices & Hopes for a Five-Month Winning Streak
The main Wall Street indices have charted notable advancements this month. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, a blue-chip index, saw a 3.1% rise in July following a 13-day winning stretch that ended last week. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 and the tech-centric Nasdaq Composite reported gains of 3% and 3.8% respectively, setting sights on a fifth successive winning month.
End of Federal Reserve's Tightening Cycle & Job Data in Spotlight
Following the Federal Reserve's move to raise interest rates to a 22-year high last week, a revised forecast suggesting no imminent U.S. recession this year is sparking optimism. Expectations are budding that the steady deceleration of inflation could signify the last hike in the central bank's year-long tightening cycle. Friday's U.S. jobs report, expected to confirm the addition of 200,000 jobs in July, an unchanged low unemployment rate of 3.6%, and moderating average hourly earnings, is eagerly awaited.
Earnings Season Fuels Positive Market Sentiment
The ongoing earnings season, featuring major tech companies like Apple and Amazon set to report earnings later this week, further adds to the optimistic market environment. As of Friday, more than half of the S&P 500-listed companies had reported second-quarter earnings, with 78.7% surpassing analysts' predictions, as per Refinitiv data reported by Reuters.
Corporate Moves Steer Market Sentiment
Notable corporate moves include Citigroup's revised year-end target for the S&P 500, up by 15%, predicting a soft landing for the U.S. economy and a favorable earnings trajectory. Retail behemoth Walmart is set to make headlines following its acquisition of a $1.4 billion stake in Indian e-commerce company Flipkart, as reported by the Wall Street Journal.
Uplifting Crude Gains & Economic Optimism
Oil prices are on an upward swing, with a positive outlook from Goldman Sachs overshadowing subdued Chinese manufacturing data. The investment bank raised its global oil demand forecast to an unprecedented 102.8 million barrels per day for July, reflecting diminished recession risks and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries' successful pricing strategy. U.S. crude futures were trading 0.7% higher at $81.17 a barrel at 06:30 ET, while Brent contracts climbed by 0.6% to $84.92.
By contrast, gold futures dropped by 0.2% to $1,995.10/oz, whereas EUR/USD traded 0.2% higher at 1.1037.