Stock futures were higher Monday morning as investors look ahead to key earnings and inflation reports that will shed light on the U.S. economy after a shaky week for markets.
Futures connected to the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 116 points. S&P 500 futures gained 0.30%, while Nasdaq 100 futures increased 0.17%. Shares of Merck rose more than 2% in premarket trading after being upgraded by Guggenheim.
Market observers generally consider the week ahead as the kickoff to earnings season, with four of the world’s largest banks – JPMorgan, Wells Fargo, Morgan Stanley and Citi – reporting Friday. PepsiCo, Delta and Domino’s are also among companies reporting next week.
Inflation will also take center stage as new monthly Consumer Price Index data comes Thursday morning.
Markets whiplashed last week, starting with a relief rally that pushed the S&P 500 up more than 5% in its largest two-day gain since 2020. That rally unwound when jobs data came in stronger than expected, signaling further rate hikes, and OPEC+’s decision to slash oil supply rattled investors. When trading ended Friday, the S&P was up 1.5% on the week. The Dow and Nasdaq were up 1.5% and 0.7%, respectively.
Still, the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq had the first positive week in the last four. All remain down substantially so far in 2022, however, and the Nasdaq is less than 1% away from its 52-week low.
“The direction of the stock market is likely to be lower because either the economy and corporate profits are going to slow meaningfully or the Fed is going to have to raise rates even higher and keep them higher for longer,” said Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment officer at Independent Advisor Alliance, on Friday.
“Given the conditions that we are operating under, we believe it’s prudent to begin preparing for a recession,” he added.
Last week brought heightened concerns that corporate earnings will show the ugly side of a surging dollar as Levi Strauss became the latest to cut guidance due to sliding international sales.