May 21, 2024

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Stock futures flat as investors digest Fed minutes Look at employment data

Stock futures flat as investors digest Fed minutes Look at employment data

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on November 11, 2022 in New York City.

Spencer Platt | Getty Images

Stock futures were flat on Thursday as investors looked beyond optimistic Federal Reserve meeting minutes and toward upcoming employment data later this week.

Futures contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 11 points. S&P 500 futures rose 0.7% and Nasdaq 100 futures rose 0.21%.

Moves follow a Intermittent trading session While traders fill in a mixed bag of economic data.

The November Job Openings and Employment Turnover, or JOLTS, report showed that the labor market remained strong, reinforcing concerns that the Federal Reserve may continue to raise interest rates as long as there remains a hot market for workers. But the ISM manufacturing index showed the sector contracting after 30 months of expansion, which investors took as a positive sign that previous rate hikes had the intended effect of cooling the economy.

Meanwhile, the minutes of the December meeting of the Federal Reserve showed the central bank staying put committed to raising interest rates “for a while”.

Keith Buchanan, a portfolio manager at Global Investments, said investors are suffering from “fresh wounds” after 2022, which brought in the worst year for the stock market since 2008. He said investors are trying to weigh what each new piece of economic data could indicate. Or a Fed suspension with broader concerns about the future.

“Every day that goes by and we get a data point moving in the right direction, it’s a positive,” Buchanan said. But it was soon followed by apprehension about the sensitivity and sensitivity of this moment ยป.

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Investors will be watching Thursday for more data on jobs, the trade deficit and business activity. Federal Reserve Speakers Raphael Bostick And the James Pollard Both of them are scheduled to speak.

On Friday, investors will review the December jobs report for updated data on employment and hourly wages. Since the report could have a significant impact on the Fed’s next moves, it has the potential to influence the market. Investors do not want to see significant gains in wage growth, which could indicate higher inflation.