Friday, December 3rd, 2021

Stock futures are mildly lower after rout in tech stocks


U.S. stock futures were mildly lower in early morning trading on Tuesday after a tech-focused sell-off spurred by rising bond yields that saw the Nasdaq Composite drop more than 1%.

Dow futures shed 33 points. S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq 100 futures both traded below the flatline.

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite fell on Monday as growth pockets of the market reacted to a jump in bond yields. The U.S. 10-year Treasury yield climbed by 9 basis points to above 1.62% on Monday.

Stocks initially reacted positively to the announcement that Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell was nominated for a second four-year term by President Joe Biden, driving expectations that the central bank will stay on its monetary path as the economy recovers from the pandemic and attempts to combat inflation. However, markets reversed course towards the end of the session and yields continued to rise.

On Monday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 17 points, after being up more than 300 points at one point in the session. The S&P 500 fell 0.32% after hitting an intraday high during regular trading. The Nasdaq Composite dropped 1.26% despite hitting an intraday record earlier in the session.

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“Bullishness was enhanced by the announcement that current Chair Powell will be reappointed by President Biden,” said Jim Paulsen, chief investment strategist for Leuthold Group. “Fears were building in recent weeks that Lael Brainard may be chosen over Powell and she was perceived as a much bigger monetary Dove which had intensified inflation fears.”

While trading is likely to slow because it’s Thanksgiving week and the Fed chief decision is behind the market, investors will be watching some economic data coming out Tuesday, including the Philly Fed. Additional data out later in the week includes weekly unemployment claims, a GDP update, personal income, and consumer confidence reads.

“It is Thanksgiving week, so the next few days will likely be extremely low volume and probably won’t have many fireworks,” said Ryan Detrick, chief financial strategist at LPL Financial. “Still, Wednesday will bring the latest Fed minutes and the Fed’s favorite measure of inflation in the PCE, so we could have something to think about before we go off and eat a lot of turkey.”

Earnings season continues on Tuesday with reports from American Eagle, Best Buy and Abercrombie & Fitch before the bell. Dell Technologies, GAP, HP and Nordstrom report quarterly earnings after the bell on Tuesday.

Investors are also juggling concerns about coronavirus overseas. German Chancellor Angela Merkel warned that the country was seeing a spike in the virus.

“Although Covid case counts are up around the globe, there is not much evidence that it is shutting down the U.S. economy again as it has in the past,” added Paulsen. “For example, travel forecasts for the Thanksgiving holiday are the strongest since before the pandemic.”

U.S. markets will be closed for the Thanksgiving holiday on Thursday. The stock market closes early at 1 p.m. ET on Friday.