Tags: u.s. stock futures

Stock Futures Take a Breather After Rally; FedEx Slides

Stock Futures Take a Breather After Rally; FedEx Slides
Federal Hall on Wall Street (AP)

Wednesday, 20 December 2023 06:53 AM EST

U.S. stock index futures inched lower on Wednesday as investors took a breather from a rally that was sparked by the Federal Reserve's likely pivot to a dovish policy, while FedEx tumbled after issuing a grim outlook.

All the three main indexes have advanced over 2% since the Fed's Dec. 13 verdict where policymakers projected lower policy rates by the end of 2024, with the blue-chips Dow hitting record highs every other day and the S&P 500 within arm's reach of its highest closing levels since January 2022.

Since then central bank officials have attempted to keep investor euphoria in check, the latest being Chicago Fed President Austan Goolsbee who said further progress on beating back inflation will be the decisive factor in any central bank decision next year to reduce interest rates.

Still, traders expect the Fed to ease credit conditions by over 125 basis points by September next year, with a 71.1% chance that the first 25 basis point cut could come in as early as March.

"We've seen positive sentiments starting back in October, but really gathering steam in December and obviously last week when we saw the FOMC coming in much more dovish than expected ... and traders are now starting to assess the sustainability of a further rally," said Daniela Hathorn, senior market analyst at Capital.com.

On the economic data front, investors await consumer confidence data that is expected to improve to 104 in December, as per a Reuters poll, and November existing home sales, both due at 10:00 a.m. ET.

Meanwhile, FedEx slid 9.9% in trading before the bell after the global delivery firm cut its full-year revenue forecast and reported quarterly profit that fell far short of analysts' targets, as its largest Express business saw demand from the U.S. Postal Service drop.

The results also dragged down shares of rival United Parcel Service by 2.8% in thin trading.

"Whilst many economic indicators are backward looking logistics takes a real time temperature, so this set of results is likely to trouble many investors," said Danni Hewson, head of financial analysis at AJ Bell.

At 5:55 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were down 44 points, or 0.12%, S&P 500 e-minis were down 8.25 points, or 0.17%, and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were down 47.75 points, or 0.28%.

Among tech-heavy Nasdaq constituents, Microsoft, Apple and Amazon.com slipped between 0.4% and 0.5%, while Nvidia slid 0.9%.

Alphabet dipped 0.4% after a report said Google plans to reorganize a big part of its 30,000-person ad sales unit, citing a person with knowledge of the situation.

© 2024 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.


StreetTalk
U.S. stock index futures inched lower on Wednesday as investors took a breather from a rally that was sparked by the Federal Reserve's likely pivot to a dovish policy, while FedEx tumbled after issuing a grim outlook.
u.s. stock futures
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2023-53-20
Wednesday, 20 December 2023 06:53 AM
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