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Stock market news live updates: Stock futures open slightly higher ahead of more earnings, jobless claims

Stock futures rose Wednesday evening as investors awaited a deluge of earnings results set for release Thursday morning, along with new economic data on the state of the consumer and labor market as the pandemic continues.

Reuters he was optimistic that the US would have an effective vaccine by the end of the year.” data-reactid=”17″>At the close of the regular session Wednesday, the S&P 500, Dow and Russell 2000 each rose to their highest levels in five weeks, as optimism over a potential vaccine came alongside stronger than expected earnings results from Goldman Sachs (GS). Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, told Reuters he was optimistic that the US would have an effective vaccine by the end of the year.

National Retail Federation called on all retailers to adopt nationwide policies of mask-wearing.” data-reactid=”18″>Nevertheless, companies and individuals across the country continue to contend with the pandemic in the meantime. Walmart (WMT), Kroger (KR) and Kohl’s (KSS) on Wednesday became some of the latest companies to require that customers wear masks while shopping, and the National Retail Federation called on all retailers to adopt nationwide policies of mask-wearing.

The new requirements came as the US continued to grapple with an ongoing rise in coronavirus cases, still especially in the South and West. California on Wednesday recorded its second-highest one-day rise at 11,126 new cases, while hospitalizations were at a record 6,786. Cases in Florida and Arizona rose at slower paces than each states’ respective average over the last seven days.

Labor Department’s weekly jobless claims print and Commerce Department’s June retail sales report. The former is expected to show another 1.25 million individuals filed new unemployment claims last week, for a 15th straight week of declines but a still-elevated level relative to the period before the pandemic. And retail sales are expected to extend their rebound for another month, rising 5% in June after a record 17.7% month over month gain in May.

BAC), Morgan Stanley (MS), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Domino’s Pizza (DPZ) and Abbott Laboratories (ABT) will be among the headlining reporters before market open. Streaming giant Netflix (NFLX) is set to report results after market close.

6:07 p.m. ET Wednesday: Stock futures open higher after highest close in five weeks

Here were the main moves at the start of the overnight session for U.S. equity futures, as of 6:07 p.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,226.00, up 6.5 points or 0.2%

  • Dow futures (YM=F): 26,840.00, up 75 points, or 0.28%

  • Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 10,693.5, up 10.25 points, or 0.1%

NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 12: A woman wearing a protective mask walks past the New York Stock Exchange on March 12, 2020. in New York City. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 2,352.60 points, a decrease of almost 10% and the largest since 1987. (Photo by Pablo Monsalve/VIEWpress/Corbis via Getty Images)

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