Stock futures stable after Dow, S&P 500 after week of loss


Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Source: NYSE

US stock index futures were little changed overnight Sunday after the S&P 500 posted its second consecutive negative week.

Futures contracts linked to the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 44 points. S&P 500 futures were flat, while Nasdaq 100 futures slipped 0.15%.

Stocks are coming off a mixed week that saw the Dow post its fourth negative week in five, while the S&P posted two straight weeks of losses for the first time since February. The Nasdaq Composite, meanwhile, gained 0.31% last week, breaking a four-week losing streak.

Despite the high-tech index’s weekly gain, however, the Nasdaq Composite ended Friday’s session in the red as bitcoin prices fell again, putting pressure on the tech sector as a whole.

The cryptocurrency’s sale continued on Sunday, with bitcoin falling about 16% to less than $ 32,000, according to data from Coin Metrics. Bitcoin prices fell to just over $ 30,000 on Wednesday, dropping to the lowest level since late January.

“The rapid rise in the value of digital currencies hit a major acceleration this week as cryptocurrencies of all stripes saw their prices drop sharply,” CIBC strategists wrote in a note to clients. “The asset class continues to be very volatile, with the potential for significant price movements resulting from a single tweet or public comment.”

The decline came as Chinese regulators called for stricter laws regarding cryptocurrency mining and trading.

“Despite the collapse of the crypto markets this week and the rather hawkish minutes from the FOMC, another drop in stocks has been bought by investors,” JPMorgan wrote in a note to clients. “This ‘buy the dip’ mentality has been remarkably strong this year and has provided support preventing any small correction in equity markets and risk from spreading,” the firm added.

The Federal Reserve hinted at its April meeting that easy monetary policies could be reconsidered if the economy continues to show signs of rapid improvement, according to the meeting minutes released last week.

Looking ahead, a number of retail companies are expected to release quarterly results in the coming week, including Nordstrom, Urban Outfitters, Gap and Ulta. Several tech companies will also release quarterly updates, including Nvidia, Snowflake, Workday, and Salesforce. On the economic data front, consumer confidence and new home sales will be released on Tuesday.

As the last full trading week of the month approaches, the Dow is on track to post a gain for May, while the S&P is on track to win a three-month streak. The Nasdaq Composite, which is down more than 3% for the month, is on course to break its longest monthly winning streak since January 2018, with its first negative month in Sept.

After outperforming year-to-date, small caps have recently faced weakness, and the Russell 2000 is on course to win a seven-month streak in a row.

“We believe the choppy / sideways trend will continue for a bit longer and the market will experience sell-off fears along the way,” noted Adam Crisafulli, founder of Vital Knowledge. “While the stocks are absorbing a lot of changes so far, all the inflection points have even more time to play.”

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– CNBC’s Michael Bloom contributed reporting.


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