U.S. stock index futures were little changed in overnight trading on Thursday, after all three major averages snapped three-day losing streaks to end the day higher.
Futures contracts tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average were flat. S&P 500 futures advanced 0.04%, while Nasdaq 100 futures slid 0.06%.
During regular trading, the Dow advanced 434 points for a gain of 1.29%. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite gained 1.22% and 0.72%, respectively.
Still, despite Thursday’s strong session, the major averages are on track for hefty losses for the week as inflation fears hit sentiment.
The Dow is down 2.18% for the week, while the S&P has shed 2.84%. Tech stocks have been hit especially hard, pulling the Nasdaq down 4.56% for the week.
“Higher inflation is likely to remain in the spotlight as the post-pandemic recovery accelerates,” Mark Haefele, chief investment officer at UBS Global Wealth Management, said in a note. “But while we expect inflation fears to generate bouts of volatility, and we continue to position for reflation, we also see such market swings as an opportunity to build exposure to structural winners.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention eased guidelines on Thursday, saying that in most settings fully vaccinated people don’t need to wear masks indoors or outdoors.
Stocks most exposed to the ongoing recovery rebounded on the heels of the announcement, with the NYSE Arca Airline Index finishing the day nearly 2% higher.
The market’s volatility this week comes as economic data points to inflation. The Consumer Price Index jumped 4.2% from a year earlier in April, which was the fastest rate since 2008. This has sparked fears that the Federal Reserve could be forced to dial back its accommodative monetary policy.
Still, earnings season has been stronger-than-expected and some believe this bull market has more room to run and investors should take advantage of any dips.
“The corporate turnaround is strong enough to keep markets rising, even as bond yields increase in anticipation of central bank tightening,” Robert Buckland, equity strategist at Citi, said in a note. “So buy any short term dips, as we may be seeing now. There is a time to turn more cautious but that may be next year, not this.”
Retail sales figures for April will be released on Friday, along with industrial production and consumer sentiment numbers.
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