volatile session that saw big tech stocks sell off sharply once again — which dragged the broader market down with them in spite of encouraging jobless data.
AMZN), Facebook (FB) and Apple (AAPL), which led the Nasdaq to its worst day in about a week. Price action reflected how investors, who have bid up stocks relentlessly since late spring, are now rethinking prospects for a sharp economic rebound in the wake of a still raging COVID-19 pandemic and no immediate fiscal boost on the table.
860,000 workers filed unemployment claims in the latest period, but that figure remained below 1 million for a third straight week. In a partly encouraging sign, continuing claims — a closely watched metric of the labor market’s health in real time — fell below 13 million. However, new housing starts fell sharply last month, new data showed, a worrying harbinger that a hot housing market could be cooling despite record low interest rates.
On Wednesday, the Fed signaled that near-zero interest rates would remain for at least the next three years, as the US economy continues to face risks around the ongoing pandemic. The Federal Open Market Committee’s newly issued expectation for interest rates to remain near zero until at least the end of 2023.
Economic data has remained surprisingly buoyant in the face of widespread uncertainty stemming from the viral outbreak — the latest of which was September consumer confidence. However, Fed officials suggest that the quicker-than-expected early economic recovery could be jeopardized by the absence of more fiscal support.
“With U.S. interest rates locked at record lows for years into the future and the Fed holding back on incremental QE measures, the recovery path from here will depend on vaccine progress, virus dynamics, fiscal support, and presidential election politics,” said Mark Haefele, chief investment officer at UBS Global Wealth Management.
“Our base case is continued reopening momentum, widespread vaccine availability by 2Q21, and an eventual compromise deal on US fiscal stimulus. The U.S. presidential contest may kick up some near-term volatility before its eventual resolution,” he added.
Despite the gloomier outlook for September — and still no sign of a new stimulus package — the University of Michigan’s preliminary read on consumer confidence showed that sentiment jumped to 78.9 vs. 74.1 in the prior month. Current economic conditions index rose to 87.5 vs. 82.9 last month, and expectations also gained, to 73.3 vs. 68.5 last month; the highest since March.
Here were the main moves in markets as of 9:30 a.m. ET:
Here were the main moves in equity markets, as of 8:25 a.m. ET Friday:
will ban downloads of the viral video app, along with messaging service WeChat, on Sunday. If carried out, the apps will be blocked from mobile app stores, and makes good on a threat to block the Chinese-owned services based on national security grounds. It also suggests Oracle’s (ORCL) bid to partner with TikTok was insufficient to pass muster with China hawks in the administration.
6:30 p.m. ET Thursday: Stock futures open near the unchanged mark
Here were the main moves in equity markets, as of 6:30 p.m. ET Thursday:
S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3350.00, flat
Dow futures (YM=F): 27817, flat
Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 11075.00, flat
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