Stock futures trade cautiously ahead of bank earnings and economic data

U.S. equity futures traded mostly higher on Thursday morning ahead of a series of bank earnings reports.

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Thursday will be the last trading day of the week before the Good Friday holiday.

Storage tanks are seen at Marathon Petroleum’s Los Angeles refinery. Photo taken with a drone. (REUTERS/Bing Guan/Reuters Photos)

Oil futures traded lower on Thursday morning as traders weighed a bigger-than-expected rise in U.S. oil inventories against a tightening in global supply.

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US West Texas Intermediate futures fell $1.44 to $102.82 a barrel.

Brent crude futures fell $1.35 to $107.43 a barrel.

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The biggest names on Wall Street will release their first quarter results on Thursday morning. They include Citigroup, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley and Dow member Goldman Sachs.

There is a comprehensive list of economic reports to watch.

Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. (AP Photo/Richard Drew) (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

The Labor Department will release its tally of new jobless claims for the past week. Expectations are for 171,000, up slightly from the 53-year low of 166,000 the previous week. Continuing claims, which track the total number of unemployed people collecting benefits, are expected to fall to 1.5 million.

The Commerce Department will release retail sales for the month of March. Economists polled by Refinitiv expect consumer spending to jump 0.6% month-on-month, double February’s 0.3% rise. Excluding the automotive component, spending is expected to rise 1% in March, up sharply from 0.2% the previous month.

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Also watch import and export prices for the month of March. Prices for imported goods likely rose 2.3% month over month, the largest increase in 11 years. Export prices are expected to jump 2.2%, down from February’s record 3.0% rise.

The University of Michigan will release its preliminary consumer sentiment index for April. Refinitiv’s estimate is 59.0, down from March’s final reading of 59.4, which was the lowest in nearly 11 years due to inflation fears.

Bitcoin traded above $40,000.

In Asia, Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 Index gained 1.2%, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng rose 0.7% and China’s Shanghai Composite Index rose 1.2%.

TeleprinterSecurityLastSwitchSwitch %
Me: DJIDOW JONES AVERAGES34564.59+344.23+1.01%
SP500S&P5004446.59+49.14+1.12%
I: COMPNASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX13643.587173+272.02+2.03%

On Wednesday, the S&P 500 index rose 1.1% to 4,446.59, snapping a three-day losing streak.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 1% to 34,564.59 and the Nasdaq rose 2% to 13,643.59.

Travel-related businesses were among the biggest winners. Delta gained 6.2% after posting strong earnings.

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Tech stocks also rose, while banks fell following a disappointing earnings report from JPMorgan. Shares fell 3.2% after posting a sharp drop in earnings after writing down nearly $1.5 billion in assets due to rising inflation and the Russian-Ukrainian war.

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Bond yields fell. The 10-year Treasury yield fell to 2.67% early Thursday from 2.72% late Tuesday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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