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U.S. stock futures rise slightly as the Dow heads for a losing week


Traders working at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), on May 19, 2021.

NYSE

U.S. stock futures inched up slightly on Thursday night, following a two-day sell-off for the Dow in the wake of the Federal Reserve’s policy update.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 0.01%. Futures for the S&P 500 ticked up 0.06%, while futures for the Nasdaq-100 climbed 0.14%.

During the regular session, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 210 points, or 0.62%, to 33,823.45. The S&P 500 fell 0.04% to 4,221.86. The Nasdaq Composite rose 0.87% to 14,161.35.

The blue-chip Dow has lost 1.9% week to date and the S&P 500 has fallen 0.6%. The Nasdaq has gained 0.65% on the week.

Commodities prices declined sharply as China attempts to cool rising prices and the U.S. dollar strengthens. Futures prices for copper, palladium and platinum fell, while U.S. oil prices tumbled more than 1%.

The highly anticipated decision from the Federal Reserve Wednesday caused a sell-off in equities. The central bank announced it’s keeping interest rates unchanged, raised its 2021 inflation expectation to 3.4% and moved planned interest rate hikes forward.

“Investors may be interpreting the Fed’s hawkish tilt Wednesday as a sign that an extended US post-pandemic economic expansion may be a bit harder to achieve in a potentially emerging environment of less accommodative monetary policy,” said Goldman Sachs’ Chris Hussey.

On Thursday, the Labor Department reported initial jobless claims rose unexpectedly last week, totaling 412,000, an increase of 37,000 from the previous week and higher than the 360,000 estimate.



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