Stocks May Move To The Downside Ahead Of Long Weekend - U.S. Commentary
(RTTNews) - After the lackluster performance seen in the previous session, stocks may move to the downside in early trading on Friday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a lower open for the markets, with the Dow futures down by 75 points.
Traders may look to cash in on the recent strength in the markets, which has lifted the major averages to new record highs.
Nonetheless, trading activity may be somewhat subdued as traders look to get a head start on the long Presidents Day weekend.
Following the slew of U.S. economic data released over the two previous days, the schedule of releases for today is relatively quiet.
Shortly after the start of trading, the Conference Board is due to release its report on leading economic indicators in the month of January. The leading economic index is expected to rise by 0.4 percent.
Among individual stocks, shares of TrueCar (TRUE) are moving sharply higher in pre-market trading after the car buying website operator reported a narrower than expected fourth quarter loss and provided upbeat guidance.
Networking company Arista Networks (ANET) is also likely to see early strength after reporting fourth quarter results that exceeded analyst estimates.
Meanwhile, Nu Skin (NUS) may come under pressure after the company reported weaker than expected fourth quarter results and offered disappointing guidance.
After trending higher over the past several sessions, stocks turned in a relatively lackluster performance during trading on Thursday. Despite the lack of direction, the Dow managed to inch up to another new record closing high.
The major averages eventually ended the day on opposite sides of the unchanged line. While the Dow crept up 7.91 points or less than a tenth of a percent to 20,619.77, the Nasdaq edged down 4.54 points or 0.1 percent to 5,814.90 and the S&P 500 dipped 2.03 points or 0.1 percent to 2,347.22.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower during trading on Friday. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index slid by 0.6 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell by 0.3 percent.
European stocks have also moved mostly lower on the day. While the French CAC 40 Index has slumped by 1 percent, the German DAX Index is down by 0.5 percent. However, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index has edged up by 0.1 percent.
In commodities trading, crude oil futures are slipping $0.26 to $53.10 a barrel after rising $0.25 to $53.36 a barrel on Thursday. Meanwhile, gold futures are currently trading at $1,242.80 an ounce, up $2.60 from the previous session's close of $1,241.60 an ounce. On Thursday, gold climbed $8.50.
On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 112.72 yen compared to the 113.24 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Thursday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.0648 compared to yesterday's $1.0674.