US stock futures traded mixed on Friday, with light pre-market volume as investors watched strong moves in the US dollar and the start of the holiday buying season amid renewed bets on a softer stance on hikes rate hikes by the Federal Reserve.
The minutes of the Fed’s early November policy meeting, released on Wednesday, showed a clear bias for smaller Fed Funds rate hikes going forward as officials try to both monitor their impact on the broader economy and avoid dislocations in financial markets.
The tone of the minutes, coupled with data suggesting that inflation in the world’s largest economy has likely peaked, has trimmed bets on a 75 basis point rate hike next month in Washington to just under 25%. , taking the US dollar index to a three-month low of 105.878 in overnight trading before climbing to 106.261 in early New York trading.
Benchmark Treasury yields are also down, with 2-year yields falling to 4.517% and 10-year yields trading at 3.65% in the overnight session before climbing to 3.744% in the early hours of New York.
Investors are also monitoring signs of strength from consumers since the first Black Friday purchases, with the National Retail Federation expecting a 6% to 8% increase in overall sales for the entire holiday period, which lasts until end of December, between $942.6 billion and $960.4 billion.
Big retail stores like Target (TGT extension) – Get a free reportWalmart (wmt extension) – Get a free report and Amazonia (AMZ extension) – Get a free report launched sales in early October in a bid to lure buyers and move billions in inventory left over from the summer break.
However, with shoppers looking to spend less throughout the holiday season, experts expect an estimated 166.3 million people rushing back to stores, an increase of 8 million over the past year, between Thanksgiving Thursday and Cyber Monday.
The Covid crisis in China, however, has kept sentiment in check, with daily infections climbing to more than 31,000 yesterday, the most since April 13, triggering new lockdown orders in major cities across the country.
Crude oil prices rebounded higher during overnight trading but are still on pace with their fourth weekly drop, after the collapse of an EU plan to cap the price of Russian crude exports between $65 and $70 a year. barrel.
WTI futures for January delivery were marked $1.10 higher at $79.18 a barrel, while Brent contracts for the same month added 89 cents to $86.26 a barrel.
As the trading day begins on Wall Street, which ends at 1:00 p.m. New York time, futures contracts linked to the S&P 500 have an opening price of 2 points while those linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average indicate a drop of 10 points points.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq is expected to open about 50 points lower than Wednesday’s close, driven in part by a 1% decline in Apple (AAPL extension) – Get a free report actions.
Reuters reported Friday that officials at the Foxconn factory in Zhengzhou, which has been beset by both strict Covid restrictions and a series of employee protests over pay and working conditions, likely won’t be able to bring the iPhone factory back. at full capacity until at least next month, with November production down “at least” 30%.
Earlier this month, Apple warned that Covid restrictions at the 200,000-person plant would curtail shipments of its high-end iPhones headed for the holiday season in most of its global markets.