Stocks were set for a mostly lower open as markets wait for Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell to speak at the Kansas City Fed’s Jackson Hole meeting Friday.
“Pre-Powell speech positioning will likely dominate markets today (Powell’s speech is tomorrow) and given stocks hit new highs this week, don’t be surprised if there’s some mild profit taking ahead of Powell’s speech tomorrow,” writes Tom Essaye, founder of Sevens Report Research.
The market will listen for what Fed Chair Jerome Powell has to say about the future of the central bank’s bond-buying program. As the economy strengthened, the Fed has signaled that the process may begin soon, though the spread of the Delta variant has complicated matters.
“What investors want to hear is that, in response to an impressive improvement in the economy, the Federal Reserve is planning to gradually reduce their extraordinary measures because they’re not necessary anymore, but will do so incrementally,” says David Donabedian, chief investment officer of CIBC Private Wealth, US.
Elsewhere, 353,000 Americans filed for first-time unemployment benefits, slightly worse than estimates of 350,000, but not enough to move markets.
Here are six stocks making moves in Thursday’s premarket action:
Dollar General (DG) stock dropped 4% after reporting a profit of $2.69 a share, beating estimates of $2.59 a share, on sales of $8.7 billion, above expectations for $8.6 billion.
Zoom Video Communications (ZM) stock rose 3.6% after getting upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley.
(YUM) stock fell 1.4% after getting downgraded to Perform from Outperform at Oppenheimer.
Nordstrom (JWN) was down 3% after the department-store operator was downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley. Nordstrom stock dropped 18% on Wednesday after reporting earnings.
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