US stocks will be in focus today, as investors await the jobless claims report scheduled for release later in the day.
Context: US stocks closed lower on Wednesday, as investors digested downbeat remarks from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell.
Details: Various state officials are trying to kickstart businesses across the country following the coronavirus outbreak. Even then, hopes of a quick recovery were crushed by Powell’s remarks of near-term uncertainty for the economy.
“While the economic response has been both timely and appropriately large, it may not be the final chapter, given that the path ahead is both highly uncertain and subject to significant downside risks,” Powell said.
Economic data continued to disappoint investors, with the US reporting a higher-than-expected decline of 1.3% in its producer-price index for April. Expectations were pinned on a 0.5% decline.
The Dow shed 516.67 points to settle at 23,247.97 on Wednesday, led by decline in shares of Dow Inc and American Express. The S&P 500 index slipped 1.8% to end at 2,820, while the Nasdaq 100 declined 1.6% to 8,863.17.
Uber Technologies and Grubhub are in acquisition talks, according to the Wall Street Journal. Shares of Cisco Systems rose around 3% in extended trading, after the company reported better-than-expected quarterly results.
In commodity news, WTI (West Texas Intermediate) crude for June fell 2% to end at $25.26 a barrel on the NYMEX (New York Mercantile Exchange), while June gold rose 0.6% to settle at $1,716.40 an ounce.
What to watch: Investors continue to keep an eye of the daily COVID-19 cases, with the total number of infections exceeding 4,347,920 globally. The number of positive COVID-19 cases in the US has surpassed 1,390,400 with around 84,110 deaths.
US stocks are expected to open on a downbeat note today, with stock futures trading lower in the European session. Markets await a basket of economic reports from the country, including initial jobless claims, export prices and import prices. Analysts expect the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits to drop to 2.5 million in the latest week, versus the prior reading of 3.169 million. Import prices, which fell 2.3% in March, are expected to decline another 3.1% in April. Export prices are likely to fall as well, by 2.1% in April.
Other Markets: European indices were trading lower at 9:00am GMT, with the FTSE 100, German 30 and Italy’s FTSE MIB down by 1.4%, 1.3% and 1.2%, respectively.