After ending yesterday’s choppy trading session mostly higher, stocks may see further upside in early trading on Friday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a higher open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by 128 points.
Traders may continue to look to pick up stocks at somewhat reduced levels following the steep drop seen during trading on Tuesday and Wednesday.
While stocks regained some ground on Thursday, the major averages are currently still poised to close notably lower for the week.
Trading activity may be somewhat subdued, however, with a lack of major U.S. economic data potentially keeping traders on the sidelines.
The Commerce Department is scheduled to release its report on wholesale inventories in the month of February, but the data typically does not move the markets.
Next week, traders are likely to keep a close eye on reports on consumer and producer price inflation, retail sales and industrial production.
The data may impact the outlook for interest rates amid recent indications the Federal Reserve plans to tighten monetary policy more aggressively than previously anticipated.
Stocks fluctuated over the course of the trading session on Thursday before ending the day mostly higher. The upward move on the day came after the major averages showed significant moves to the downside over the course of the two previous sessions.
The major averages gave back ground going into the close of trading but remained in positive territory. The Dow rose 87.06 points or 0.3 percent to 34,583.57, the Nasdaq inched up 8.48 points or 0.1 percent to 13,897.30 and the S&P 500 climbed 19.06 points or 0.4 percent to 4,500.21.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly higher during trading on Friday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index rose by 0.4 percent, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index climbed by 0.5 percent.
The major European markets have also moved to the upside on the day. While the German DAX Index has jumped by 1.2 percent, the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index is up by 1.1 percent and the French CAC 40 Index is up by 1 percent.
In commodities trading, crude oil futures are jumping $1.14 to $97.17 a barrel after edging down $0.20 to $96.03 a barrel on Thursday. Meanwhile, after climbing $14.70 to $1,937.80 an ounce an ounce in the previous session, gold futures are inching up $0.30 to $1,938.10 an ounce.
On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 124.35 yen versus the 123.95 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Thursday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.0864 compared to yesterday’s $1.0879.
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