23 June 2018

U.S. Stock Futures Edge Higher

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U.S. stock futures inched higher Wednesday, indicating a sixth straight session of gains for the Dow industrials and the S&P 500. Dow Jones Industrial Average futures rose 24 points, or 0.1%, to 18000. S&P 500 futures added two points, or 0.1%, to 2081 and Nasdaq-100 futures gained seven points, or 0.2%, to 4285. Changes in stock futures don’t always accurately predict moves in the stock market after the opening bell.

Futures remained slightly higher after the Labor Department said jobless claims fell by 9,000 to 280,000 in the week ended Dec. 20. Economists polled by The Wall Street Journal had expected 290,000 new claims. Trading will end at 1 p.m. Eastern Wednesday, and the U.S. stock market will be closed Thursday for Christmas. Volume has been declining ahead of the holiday, with about 5.7 billion shares trading Tuesday, the lowest since Nov. 28.

The Dow pushed above 18000 for the first time Tuesday, boosted by data showing the U.S. economy posted its strongest growth in more than a decade. The Dow rose 0.4% to 18024.17, notching its 36th record in 2014. The S&P also hit a fresh record, its 51st this year, with a gain of 0.2% to 2082.17. The Nasdaq Composite fell 0.3% to 4765.42.

The Federal Reserve’s assurance that it will be patient in deciding when to raise interest rates has boosted the Dow by 955.30 points, or 5.6%, in the five trading days through Tuesday. That is the largest five-day point gain since November 2008 and the biggest percentage gain since December 2011.

European trading was light on Wednesday ahead of the holiday. A decline in oil prices weighed on shares of energy companies. In other markets, gold futures fell 0.2% to $1175.20 an ounce. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.276% from 2.257% on Tuesday.

Click here to access the full article on The Wall Street Journal. 

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