Dow Futures Down 125 Pts; Fed Meeting, Corporate Earnings in Focus

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By Peter Nurse    

© Reuters Dow Futures Down 125 Pts; Fed Meeting, Corporate Earnings in Focus — U.S. stocks are seen opening marginally lower, consolidating after a positive start to the new month ahead of Wednesday’s key Federal Reserve interest rate decision.

At 7 AM ET (1100 GMT), the Dow Futures contract was down 125 points, or 0.4%, S&P 500 Futures traded 15 points, or 0.4%, lower and Nasdaq 100 Futures dropped 55 points, or 0.4%.

The main Wall Street indices closed higher Monday, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite leading the way, ending 1.6% higher, while the blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.3% and the broad-based S&P 500 rose 0.6%.

These gains came after a grim April, with the Dow and S&P 500 suffering their weakest months since March 2020 and the Nasdaq since 2008, on the back of concerns about tightening monetary policy, slowing economic growth, rising inflation and Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine.

The Federal Reserve starts its latest policy-setting meeting later Tuesday, and is expected to raise rates by a half-point when it delivers its decision on Wednesday. 

Along with the rate call, investors will get to hear from Fed Chair Jerome Powell, who could provide clues on the internal thinking of the policy making board and what lies ahead.

The latest reading of the Job Openings and Labor Turnover data is expected at 10 AM ET (1400 GMT), on Tuesday, ahead of Wednesday’s ADP private payrolls report and Friday’s crucial monthly jobs report for April.

Corporate earnings continue to flood in this week after last week’s heavy dose of technology reports. The likes of Restaurant Brands (NYSE:QSR), and Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) report earnings before the bell, while Airbnb (NASDAQ:ABNB), Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD), and Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) are due to release after the close.

Additionally, Chegg (NYSE:CHGG) stock slumped over 39% in premarket trade after the online education services company offered up weak full-year guidance, while Avis (NASDAQ:CAR) stock rose 6.5% premarket after the rental car company reported a record first quarter profit, helped by a recovery in U.S. travel demand.

Oil prices edged lower Tuesday but remained elevated as the European Union is expected to firm up plans to tighten sanctions on Russia this week, potentially agreeing to an embargo on Moscow’s oil.

U.S. inventory data for the week ended April 29 from the American Petroleum Institute industry group are due later in the session, as a precursor for government data from the Energy Information Administration on Wednesday.

By 7 AM ET, U.S. crude futures traded 1.5% lower at $103.58 a barrel, while the Brent contract fell 1.5% to $105.95.

Additionally, gold futures fell 0.2% to $1,859.54/oz, while EUR/USD traded largely flat at 1.0503.