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Wall Street to make cautious start as macro data eyed

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Wall Street is expected to open slightly lower despite positive comments on the US economy in the past couple of days of congressional testimony by Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell and US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.

Reversing early indications of a gain, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is forecast to start trading down 47 points at 32,373. The S&P 500 is expected to open 6 points lower at 3883 and the Nasdaq Composite down 16 points at 12,945.

Ahead of the open come US growth figures and weekly jobless claims, both or either of which could have an impact on which way the US market ultimately goes.

US GDP is forecast to have risen by an annualised 4.1% in the fourth quarter of last year, in line with the previous provisional estimate. Meanwhile, jobless claims are predicted to fall from 770,000 to 730,000, but these can sometimes produce a surprise.

Three things to watch for on Thursday:

  • The earnings calendar for Thursday is looking rather thin, with the only large cap results coming from Olive Garden owner Darden Restaurants Inc (NYSE:DRI), which managed to beat estimates
  • Shares in Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE) could be in focus amid an ongoing boycott of western brands in China following sanctions from several nations on Communist officials accused of involvement in human rights abuses of Uyghurs in Xinjiang province
  • Commodities and oil prices may also continue to attract attention as the Suez canal remains blocked by a grounded cargo tanker that became lodged there earlier this week

Story by ProactiveInvestors


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