US open: Stocks point higher as Fed speakers calm the markets

Congress building
Fiona Cincotta
By :  ,  Senior Market Analyst

US futures

Dow futures +0.02% at 35110

S&P futures +0.08% at 4513

Nasdaq futures +0.27% at 14954

In Europe

FTSE +1.2% at 7541

Dax +1.45% at 15642

Euro Stoxx +1.22% at 4225

Learn more about trading indices

Earnings & manufacturing data in focus

Stocks are heading for a mildly positive start after the rollercoaster ride that was January. Fears of a very aggressive Fed sent stocks sharply lower at the start of the year, with the market pricing in around 4 to 5 rate hikes this year.

Fed speakers were out on Monday, back tracking which appears to have calmed nerves. Whilst speakers indicated that they are still pointing to a March lift off for rate hikes, they attempted to dampen expectations of a 50-basis point rise. This is at least easing some fears that the Fed would act more aggressively than what the US economy could withstand.

Earnings season ramps up another gear with results from Exxon Mobile and UPS in focus and Alphabet, PayPal and General Motors will report after the closing bell.

So far earnings have been encouraging and have at least cushioned the steep selloff that we saw in January.

Looking ahead, the ISM manufacturing PMI is expected to show a slight slow down in activity growth to 57.5, down from 58.7 in December. The level 50 separates expansion from contraction.

In other corporate news:

Tesla will be under the spotlight amid reports that it will re-call 50,000 US vehicles with the full self-drive software over safety worries.

Where next for the S&P?

The S&P 500 is extending its rebound from the 2022 low of 4220. The price has broken above the 50 sma and key resistance at 4450, which combined with the bullish RSI are keeping buyers hopeful of further upside. Immediate resistance can be seen at 4535 the 100 sma, ahead of 4600 the January 20 high. Support can be seen at 4500 and a break below 4450 would expose the 509 sma at 4407.

S&P 500 chart

FX markets USD falls, EUR rises despite mixed data

The USD is falling lower extending losses from the previous session after Fed policy speakers came out back tracking over the really hawkish Fed Powell speech.

EUR/USD is rising on the back of the weaker USD and despite mixed data. German retail sales dropped by 5.5% MoM in December, and German manufacturing activity also grow slower than expected in January, although it remains strong. Unemployment fell to 5.1%, after the unemployment change fell by 48,000. In the broader eurozone, unemployment also dropped to its lowest level since the start of the pandemic at 7%.

GBP/USD +0.24% at 1.3485

EUR/USD +0.24% at 1.1258


Oil eases on OPEC+ doubts

Oil prices are edging lower, snapping a two-day winning run, but remain close to the 7 year high ahead of the OPEC+ meeting tomorrow.

OPEC+ had been expected to keep output levels constant. However, Goldman Sachs have said that they see growing reason for OPEC+ to lift production quotas higher, particularly in light of the recent rally in oil and amid growing pressure from importing nations.

Oil prices have surged on tight supply and on fears of supply disruption as Russia continues to amass troops on the Ukraine boarder.

Also adding to downside pressure on oil are expectations of a build in inventories by 1.8 million barrels.

WTI crude trades -0.76% at $86.72

Brent trades -0.71% at $88.47

Learn more about trading oil here.


Looking ahead

14:30 CAD Manufacturing PMI

14:45 US Manufacturing PMI

15:00 ISM Manufacturing PMI


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