US Futures Edge Higher; Pfizer in Focus as Earnings Continue

Investing.com – U.S. stocks are seen opening marginally higher, rebounding to a degree after recent losses, as the earnings season continues and ahead of a large economic data dump.

At 7:05 AM ET (1105 GMT), S&P 500 Futures traded 6 points, or 0.2%, higher, the Dow Futures contract rose 59 points, or 0.2%, while Nasdaq 100 Futures climbed 29 points, or 0.3%. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 0.1% lower Thursday, while the S&P 500 index declined 0.2% and the Nasdaq Composite index dropped 0.5%. These cash indices have ended lower for the last three days.

The earnings season continues apace Friday, with Honeywell International (NYSE:HON) the largest company due. The recent addition to the Dow will look to keep a four-year streak of profit beats going. 

On the financials side, the market will hear from Bank of New York Mellon (NYSE:BK), State Street (NYSE:STT) and Citizens Financial (NYSE:CFG), with these companies looking to continue what has generally been a good quarter for the banking sector – at least in comparison to the previous quarter’s horrow show.

Drug giant Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) will also be in focus after it said it would file for U.S. emergency approval of its Covid-19 vaccine candidate as soon as a safety milestone is achieved in the third week of November.

There is also a crowded economic data slate for investors to study Friday, particularly after Thursday’s initial jobless claims suggested the jobs market was weakening again. 

The September retail sales figure is due at 8:30 AM ET (1230 GMT), and will be studied to see if Americans are still spending freely. Economists are expecting a gain of 0.7%, not much of a change from August’s 0.6%. Also coming on the economic data front are September’s industrial production figures and October’s consumer sentiment from the University of Michigan.

These numbers are likely to further emphasize the need for additional fiscal stimulus, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin are scheduled to talk again Friday. 

President Donald Trump said Thursday he was willing to go bigger than the $1.8 trillion already proposed, but a larger coronavirus deal is likely to meet with resistance from members of Trump’s party in the Republican-controlled Senate.

Oil prices weakened Friday amid continued concerns about stagnating demand given the surge in Covid-19 cases. Also of concern is the idea that more supply could hit the market, as OPEC experts gave no indication that an increase in output of nearly 2 million barrels a day, scheduled for the start of next year, will be postponed.

Data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration released on Thursday showed a 3.818 million-barrel draw in crude oil supplies last week, but this did little to alleviate the gloom.

U.S. crude futures traded 1.1% lower at $40.52 a barrel, while the international benchmark Brent contract fell 1.2% to $42.66.

Elsewhere, gold futures rose 0.2% at $1,912.70/oz, while EUR/USD traded 0.1% higher at 1.1721.

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