S&P 500 Futures Show Strength After Brief Decline, Eyes on Apple, Amazon, and Meta Results

On Thursday morning, U.S. stock index futures saw an uptick in anticipation of earnings releases from three major companies: Apple, Amazon.com, and Meta Platforms.

Current stock-index futures trading status is as follows:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES00, 0.38%) increased by 14 points, or 0.3%, reaching 4884.
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average futures (YM00, 0.09%) added 32 points, or 0.1%, hitting 38312.
  • Nasdaq 100 futures (NQ00, 0.55%) climbed 86 points, or 0.5%, to 17328.

In the previous session, the Dow Jones Industrial Average declined by 317 points (0.82%) to 38150, the S&P 500 dropped by 79 points (1.61%) to 4846, and the Nasdaq Composite saw a decrease of 346 points (2.23%) to 15164.

Factors influencing the market:

The S&P 500 experienced a 1.7% dip over the last two sessions, driven by disappointment in big tech earnings and concerns about the monetary policy trajectory.

These factors are expected to continue shaping market sentiment throughout the week.

Following the inability of Microsoft, Alphabet, and Advanced Micro Devices to match the optimistic outlook that drove the market to a record high earlier in the week, Apple, Meta, and Amazon.com are set to announce their results after Thursday’s closing.

Investors are exercising caution, with many on the lookout for any missteps to take advantage of the stretched tech rally, according to Ipek Ozkardeskaya, a senior analyst at Swissquote Bank.

Apple, Amazon, and Meta’s results need to impress investors, or there is a risk of an intensifying tech selloff, Ozkardeskaya warned.

Apple’s options pricing indicates that traders anticipate a move of around plus or minus 3% for the stock by the end of the week, according to MarketWatch calculations.

Other companies reporting results on Thursday include Altria, Peloton Interactive, Merck, and Honeywell International before the opening bell, followed by Atlassian, U.S. Steel, and Skechers after the close.

Traders are also closely monitoring the regional banking sector, particularly after New York Community Bancorp’s shares plummeted due to difficulties in commercial real estate.

Aozora, a Japanese bank, issued a profit warning, cutting the value of its U.S. office portfolio and facing losses on U.S. and European bonds.

Investors are still evaluating the timing of potential Federal Reserve rate cuts. While Fed Chair Jay Powell mentioned that a rate cut in March was not the most likely scenario, fixed income futures markets now indicate an increased certainty of rates falling at the subsequent Fed meeting in May.

Steve Clayton, head of equity funds at Hargreaves Lansdown, likened the situation to a delayed train rather than a cancellation. Investors are less likely to forgive delays if data suggests the economy has room to keep inflation rising, he added.

Market attention will also be on the nonfarm payrolls report on Friday, hoping for signs that wage growth is not accelerating.

Before that, U.S. economic updates set for release on Thursday include the weekly initial jobless claims report, fourth-quarter 2023 productivity, the final reading of the S&P manufacturing PMI survey for January, and the January ISM manufacturing report, along with December construction spending. These releases are scheduled at various times throughout the day.

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