Stock Market News Live Updates: Stock Futures Rise Ahead of CPI Inflation Data

U.S. stock futures edged ahead in early trade Thursday as Wall Street awaited consumer price data and watched the results of the election runoff.

Futures linked to the S&P 500 (^GSPC) rose 0.2%, while Dow Jones Industrial Average futures (^DJI) added just 30 points, or 0.1%. Contracts on the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC) rose by 0.4%. The moves come after each of the major averages fell at least 2% on Wednesday amid midterm election uncertainty.

Republicans appeared poised to take control of the House of Representatives, but did not clean up the polls as much as expected, undermining optimism about investor expectations in a market-friendly impasse.

As Wall Street waits for political clarity while the vote count is still underway, GLOBALT Investments vice president and senior portfolio manager Thomas Martin says markets are now laser-focused on just one thing: the effect of central bank tightening on inflation.

“For now, the effects do not appear to be that different from zero,” he said in a note late Wednesday. “Yes, there were data points that hinted at some price easing, but they failed to muster sustained momentum.”

Investors are bracing for another hot reading on inflation when the government releases the October consumer price index (CPI) at 8:30 am ET. Economists expect print headlines to show annual growth of 7.9%, while the headline figure is 6.5%.

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 2: U.S. Federal Reserve Bank Chairman Jerome Powell answers reporters' questions during a news conference following a meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee (FMOC) at the bank's headquarters on November 02, 2022. in Washington, DC.  In a move to fight inflation, Powell announced that the Federal Reserve was raising interest rates by three-quarters of a percentage point, the sixth rate hike this year and the fourth in a row at such high rates.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 02: US Federal Reserve Bank Chairman Jerome Powell answers questions from reporters during a news conference on November 02, 2022 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Until the last policy-setting meeting earlier this month, traders had hoped that Federal Reserve officials would ease their plans to tighten monetary policy as economic data softened. But Chairman Jerome Powell pushed back against the idea that a change in the Fed’s path was imminent, with inflation and wages still strongly elevated.

“The latest inflation numbers are again higher than expected,” Powell said. “Price pressures remain evident across a wide range of goods and services.”

Renewed risk aversion on Wednesday was also fueled by the rapid FTX crash, the cryptocurrency exchange run by billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried. Concerns about the possibility of FTX defaulting after rival Binance pulled out of an emergency rescue deal to buy the firm sent chaos into crypto markets, with jitters spilling over into other risk assets. Bitcoin was hovering around $16,300 on Thursday morning.

USA - MAY 12: From right, Terence A. Duffy, CEO of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO of FTX US Derivatives, Christopher Edmonds, Chief Development Officer of the Intercontinental Exchange, and Christopher Perkins, President of CoinFund , testify during a House Agriculture Committee hearing titled Changing Market Roles: The FTX Proposal and Trends in New Clearing House Models, at the Longworth Building on Thursday, May 12, 2022. (Tom Williams/CQ- Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

USA – MAY 12: Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO of FTX US Derivatives, testifies during a House Agriculture Committee hearing on Thursday, May 12, 2022. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

On the corporate front, shares of Bumble (BMBL) sank 15% in extended trade after it reported third-quarter earnings that missed Wall Street estimates and revised downward guidance for the current period because of currency headwinds and Russia’s war in Ukraine.

ZipRecruiter (ZIP) shares, meanwhile, jumped by the same amount after the online jobs market raised its full-year forecast and gave the go-ahead for a $200 million increase in its stock buyback program.

Alexandra Semenova is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @alexandraandnyc

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