After ending the previous session modestly higher, stocks may move to the downside in early trading on Tuesday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a lower open for the markets, with the Dow futures down by 114 points.
Traders may look to cash in on some of the recent strength in the markets, although trading activity is likely to remain subdued following the choppy session on Monday.
The Federal Reserve’s monetary policy announcement on Wednesday is likely to keep some traders on the sidelines as they wait for more clues about the outlook for monetary policy.
While the Fed is expected to leave interest rates unchanged, traders will be paying close attention to any comments regarding the central bank’s asset purchase program.
Traders may also be reluctant to make significant moves ahead of the release of quarterly results from tech giants Alphabet (GOOGL), Microsoft (MSFT) and Apple (AAPL) after the close of today’s trading.
On the earnings front, shares of Tesla (TSLA) are seeing pre-market strength after the electric car maker reported second quarter results that exceeded analyst estimates.
3M (MM) and General Electric (GE) may also move to the upside after the conglomerates reported better than expected second quarter results.
Meanwhile, shares of UPS (UPS) may see initial weakness after the delivery giant reported second quarter earnings that beat estimates but weaker than expected domestic revenue.
In economic news, the Commerce Department released a report showing new orders for U.S. manufactured durable goods saw continued growth in the month of June, although the increase came in well below expectations.
The report said durable goods orders climbed by 0.8 percent in June after spiking by an upwardly revised 3.2 percent in May.
Economists had been expecting orders to surge up by 2.1 percent compared to the 2.3 percent jump that had been reported for the previous month.
Excluding orders for transportation equipment, durable goods orders rose by 0.3 percent in June following a 0.5 percent increase in May. Ex-transportation orders were expected to climb by 0.8 percent.
Shortly after the start of trading, the Conference Board is due to release its report on consumer confidence in the month of July. The consumer confidence index is expected to drop to 124.9 in July from 127.3 in June.
Stocks showed a lack of direction throughout much of the trading day on Monday but managed to end the session modestly higher. With the uptick on the day, the major averages once again reached new record closing highs.
The major averages all finished the day in positive territory, although the Nasdaq inched up just 3.72 points or less than a tenth of a percent to 14,840.71. The Dow rose 82.76 points or 0.2 percent to 35,144.31 and the S&P 500 edged up 10.53 points or 0.2 percent to 4,422.30.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region turned in a mixed performance during trading on Tuesday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index rose by 0.5 percent, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index plunged by 2.5 percent.
Meanwhile, the major European markets have all moved to the downside on the day. While the German DAX Index has slid by 0.6 percent, the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index and the French CAC 40 Index are both down by 0.5 percent.
In commodities trading, crude oil futures are edging down $0.06 to $71.85 a barrel after slipping $0.16 to $71.91 a barrel on Monday. Meanwhile, after dipping $2.60 to $1,799.20 an ounce in the previous session, gold futures are rising $5.30 to $1,804.50 an ounce.
On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 109.99 yen compared to the 110.39 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Monday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.1814 compared to yesterday’s $1.1803.
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