حفلة 2024

Stock Futures Lower Ahead Of Fed Minutes, Bernanke

U.S. stock-market futures pitched slightly lower as investors settled in to wait for the minutes of the Federal Reserve’s latest meeting, which could potentially reveal more insight into the central bank’s “tapering” plans. A speech by Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke will also garner close attention.

Investors were also absorbing disappointing Chinese trade data, with Europe and Asia stocks trading weaker.

Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average  fell 12 points to 15,210, while those for the Standard & Poor’s 500 index  fell 2.6 points to 1,643. Futures for the Nasdaq 100 index  eased 3 points to 2,971.50.

The Fed will release the minutes of the June 18-19 Federal Open Market Committee meeting at 2 p.m. Eastern Time. At a press conference following the last meeting, Bernanke said tapering could begin later this year. See preview

“Some FOMC members have since attempted to soften the message in statements, so it will be interesting to see to what degree there is consensus among the FOMC members,” said analysts at Danske Bank in a note.

Later in the day, Bernanke will speak at a conference of prominent economists to discuss the Fed’s first 100 years, with questions and answers to follow. The speech will begin shortly after Wall Street’s regular session closes.

Also on Wednesday, the government will release its wholesale inventories report for May at 10 a.m. Eastern. Inventories rose 0.2% in April, according to preliminary estimates.

Wall Street stocks rose Tuesday with the Standard & Poor’s 500 index   coming within 1% of its all-time closing high. The S&P 500 index added 11.86 points, or 0.7%, to 1,652.32, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average  climbed 75.65 points, or 0.5%, to 15,300.34.

Within corporates, shares of Helen of Troy Corp. could rise in premarket trading. The consumer-products company’s fiscal first-quarter earnings fell 39% after a big write-down, but revenue at two of three units improved. The company beat forecasts for adjusted earnings and revenue.

Also, Yum Brands  is expected to report second-quarter earnings of 54 cents a share, according to a consensus survey by FactSet.

Family Dollar Stores  is projected to post third-quarter earnings of $1.03 a share.

Fastenal is projected to post earnings of 41 cents a share in the second quarter.

Stocks in Europe turned to losses by late morning trade, as investors waited for the Fed minutes. Italian stocks were under pressure after Standard & Poor’s cut the country’s sovereign debt rating to BBB late Tuesday. Spanish stocks were also under pressure.

Stocks in China saw volatile trading after the country reported an unexpected drop in exports. Analysts said it’s likely that a continued effort by the government to eliminate the practice of inflation export receipts contributed to the fall. Japan and South Korean shares also declined.

Gold rose as the dollar fell, largely against the yen. Simon Smith, head of research at FxPro, said in emailed comments that yen gains are being driven by a growing belief that the Bank of Japan will “sound a more bullish tone on the economy,” at this week’s meeting.

Crude oil shot above $104 a barrel after weekly U.S. crude-supplies fell by more than double the amount analysts had expected.

Source : Marketwatch

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