A child wearing a face mask sits on the Charging Bull statue, also known as the Wall Street Bull, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in New York, August 19, 2020.
Carlo Allegri | Reuters
U.S. stock futures rose on Thursday night as traders were set to end a week which saw the broader market reach a record level.
Dow Jones Industrial Average futures traded 32 points higher, or 0.1%. S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures also climbed 0.1%.
Earlier this week, the S&P 500 broke above its late-February high and notched a fresh all-time high. The Nasdaq Composite also hit a record on Thursday. The S&P 500 ended Thursday’s session up 0.4% for the week while the Nasdaq was up over 2% week to date.
The lion’s share of those gains has been driven by strong gains in Big Tech stocks. Apple is up nearly 3% this week and became the first publicly traded company in the U.S. to reach a market valuation of $2 trillion. Amazon and Alphabet have rallied over 4% this week and Microsoft is up 2.7% in that time.
“These are great companies and they are likely to continue to deliver solid earnings growth, but one has to wonder if there isn’t too much enthusiasm baked into their current stock prices,” said Brian Price, head of investment management at Commonwealth Financial Network. “It would be constructive for the overall health of the stock market if we started to see wider breadth and other sectors showing relative strength. We’ve had a few minor rallies in cyclical value-oriented sectors off the March lows but none that have been sustainable.”
Sentiment has been kept in check this week, however, by mixed economic data and a warning from the Federal Reserve.
The Labor Department said Thursday that initial weekly jobless claims came in above 1 million, surpassing a Dow Jones estimate of 923,000. To be sure, continuing claims decreased by more than 600,000.
On Wednesday, the Fed released the minutes from its July meeting that said the coronavirus pandemic “would weigh heavily on economic activity, employment, and inflation in the near term.”
The latest data on U.S. existing home sales is due for release Friday at 10 a.m. ET.
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