Finance

Stock futures tick lower to end record-setting week

stock-futures-tick-lower-to-end-record-setting-week

John Nacion | NurPhoto | Getty Images

Contracts pegged to the major US stock indices gave way on Thursday evening as Wall Street looked to end the record week on a muted note.

Dow futures lost 34 points while S&P 500 futures were just below the flatline. Nasdaq 100 futures fell 11.75 points, or about 0.1%.

The after-hours moves came after a strong performance by the Nasdaq Composite earlier in the day during the regular session.

The index rose to another record high as investors placed bets on strong tech gains next week. The tech-heavy benchmark rose 0.6%, making new highs thanks in large part to a 3.7% gain in Apple shares.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 both had muted sessions, with the former dropping 12 points and the latter less than 0.1% to make another new high.

Hopes for a robust earnings season from the country’s largest communications and technology stocks saw mega-cap stocks trending upward during the week of shortened holidays, with major indices nearing records.

Apple and Facebook were up 7.7% and 8.6%, respectively, this week ahead of their quarterly results, while Microsoft was up 5.8%.

Wall Street’s eyes are still on Washington as new President Joe Biden works to lay the early groundwork for his Covid-19 and economic recovery agenda.

Investors are increasingly confident that Congress will consider a scaled-down version of Biden’s original $ 1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill. Some moderate senators have expressed doubts about the need for another bill, particularly one with such a price tag, less than a month after Congress passed a $ 900 billion incentive in December.

Meanwhile, the Senate is expected to approve former Fed chair Janet Yellen as Biden’s Treasury Secretary by an overwhelming majority on Friday. If this were confirmed, she would be the first woman to head the department.

On company news, IBM shares fell more than 6% in the extended session after the company reported fourth-quarter revenue that was below analysts’ expectations. Revenue declined 6% on a year-on-year basis for the fourth straight quarter of declines.

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