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US Stock Futures Stable in Pre-Market On Path for Consecutive Quarterly Gains, Oil Prices Rise

Fernanda T
Latest News
March 28 2024 7:42AM

U.S. index futures are nearly unchanged in pre-market trading this Thursday. The indexes are on track to close the second consecutive quarter with positive outcomes, in addition to marking the fifth consecutive month of gains.

At 07:04 AM, Dow Jones futures (DOWI:DJI) dropped 6 points, or 0.01%. S&P 500 futures retreated 0.03%, and Nasdaq-100 futures lost 0.04%. The yield on 10-year Treasury bonds was at 4.218%.

In the commodities market, West Texas Intermediate crude oil for May rose 1.17% to $82.30 a barrel. Brent crude oil for May increased 1.06% to around $87.00 a barrel. Iron ore traded on the Dalian exchange fell 0.85% to $104.84 per metric ton.

During this quarter, the S&P 500 exhibited exceptional performance, achieving remarkable growth of about 10%, which puts it on track to reach its most significant first-quarter gain since the impressive 13.1% increase observed in 2019. Meanwhile, the Dow Jones, with a 5.5% increase in the same period, is on the verge of having its best start of the year since the 7.4% jump in 2021. The Nasdaq also stood out, with a substantial increase of 9.3% over the quarter, reinforcing the positive atmosphere currently permeating the stock market.

Thursday’s economic agenda brings valuable data, including unemployment insurance claims at 8:30 AM, followed by the third estimate of the fourth-quarter GDP. Later, at 10:00 AM, the revised March consumer sentiment index by the University of Michigan and Thomson Reuters, and at the same time, February’s pending home sales by the Department of Commerce, will be released.

Asian markets closed mixed, reflecting varied sentiments among investors. In China, optimism boosted the Shanghai Stock Exchange, which rose 0.59%, after statements from Xi Jinping about trade ties with the US. In contrast, Japan’s Nikkei fell 1.46%, affected by ex-dividend traded stocks. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index advanced 0.91%, while South Korea’s Kospi dropped 0.34%. The Australian ASX 200 reached a new all-time high, with an increase of 0.99%.

European stock exchanges are trading higher, despite economic challenges. The release of the British GDP, showing a recession with a 0.3% contraction in the last quarter of 2023, did not shake investor optimism, who also considered the slight increase in employment in Germany in February. Moreover, there are expectations around the business and consumer confidence indexes in Italy.

On Wednesday, US stock indexes had a predominantly positive close after fluctuations during the session. Highlights included the Dow Jones and S&P 500, which advanced 1.22% and 0.86%, respectively, ending a three-day streak of declines. The Nasdaq rose 0.51% on the day. This movement was supported by traders’ willingness to take advantage of lower prices, as well as optimism about interest rate prospects, influenced by recent Federal Reserve statements. Sectors such as gold and utilities also stood out, reflecting a market in search of opportunities amidst a cautious scenario with upcoming economic data.

On the earnings front, companies scheduled to present financial reports before market open include Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA), Hut 8 Mining Corp (NASDAQ:HUT), Azul (NYSE:AZUL), Gold Royalty Corp (AMEX:GROY), MSC Industrial Direct (NYSE:MSM), Iterum Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ITRM), Atour Lifestyle Holdings (NASDAQ:ATAT), BRP Inc (NASDAQ:DOOO), Consolidated Water (NASDAQ:CWCO), D-Wave Quantum (NYSE:QBTS), among others.

After the close, the numbers from Energous Corporation (NASDAQ:WATT), Vuzix Corporation (NASDAQ:VUZI), Zevra Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ZVRA), Oxford Industries (NYSE:OXM), Planet Labs (NYSE:PL), Semtech Corporation (NASDAQ:SMTC), Sharecare Inc (NASDAQ:SHCR), Emeren Group (NYSE:SOL), Surf Air Mobility (NYSE:SRFM), Daré Bioscience (NASDAQ:DARE), and more are awaited.