U.S. stock futures traded higher in early pre-market trade. The Dow and the S&P 500 gained in the previous session after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell outlined new approach to inflation at the Jackson Hole annual economic symposium.
Investors are awaiting earnings from Big Lots, Inc. (NYSE: BIG) and Hibbett Sports, Inc. (NASDAQ: HIBB). Data on personal income, wholesale inventories and international trade in goods for July will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET. The Chicago PMI for August is scheduled for release at 9:45 a.m. ET, while the University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment index for August will be released at 10:30 a.m. ET.
Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 137 points to 28,605 while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index futures traded rose 12.25 points to 3,497.50. Futures for the Nasdaq 100 index gained 2 points to 11,954.75.
The U.S. has the highest number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in the world, with total infections in the country exceeding 5,869,030 with around 180,840 deaths. Brazil confirmed over 3,761,390 cases, while India reported a total of at least 3,387,500 confirmed cases.
Oil prices traded lower as Brent crude futures fell 0.2% to trade at $45.52 per barrel, while US WTI crude futures fell 0.3% to trade at $42.93 a barrel. The Baker Hughes North American rig count report for the latest week is scheduled for release at 1:00 p.m. ET.
A Peek Into Global Markets
European markets were mixed today, with the Spanish Ibex Index rising 0.6% and STOXX Europe 600 Index declining 0.3%. The UK’s FTSE index was trading higher by 0.2%, while French CAC 40 Index declined 0.1% and German DAX 30 fell 0.4%.
In Asian markets, Japan’s Nikkei fell 1.41%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index rose 0.56% China’s Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.6% and India’s BSE Sensex rose 1%.
Analysts at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods upgraded United Community Banks, Inc. (NASDAQ: UCBI) from Market Perform to Outperform and announced a $23 price target.
United Community Banks shares rose 1.6% to close at $17.98 on Thursday.
HP Inc (NYSE: HPQ) reported stronger-than-expected results for its third quarter and issued strong earnings guidance for FY20. Gap Inc (NYSE: GPS) reported better-than-expected results for the second quarter. The retailer’s quarterly comparable sales rose 13% during the quarter. Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, is considering resigning due to health concerns, several local media reports suggested Friday. Dell Technologies Inc (NYSE: DELL) reported upbeat results for its second quarter amid strong demand for its notebooks.
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