U.S. Stocks Likely To Move To The Upside In Early Trading

After moving in starkly opposite directions last Friday, stocks are likely to move mostly higher in early trading on Monday. The major index futures are pointing to a notably higher open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by 331 points.

The upward momentum on Wall Street comes as optimism about coronavirus vaccine rollouts and the economic outlook have overshadowed recent concerns about an increase in treasury yields.

Johnson & Johnson’s (JNJ) single-shot Covid-19 vaccine received emergency use authorization from the FDA on Saturday, paving the way for its distribution.

The House of Representatives also passed a $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief package early Saturday, adding to optimism about further stimulus.

Shortly after the start of trading, the Institute for Supply Management is scheduled to release its report on manufacturing activity in the month of February.

The ISM’s manufacturing PMI is expected to inch up to 58.8 in February from 58.7 in January, with a reading above 50 indicating growth in the manufacturing sector.

The Commerce Department is also scheduled to release its report on construction spending in the month of January. Construction spending is expected to increase by 0.8 percent.

Following the sell-off seen during trading on Thursday, stocks saw considerable volatility over the course of the trading day on Friday. While a rebound by tech stocks contributed to an advance by the Nasdaq, the Dow posted a steep loss.

The Nasdaq climbed 72.91 points or 0.6 percent to 13,192.34 after ending Thursday’s trading at its lowest closing level in a nearly month. Meanwhile, the Dow plunged 469.64 points or 1.5 percent to 30,932.37 and the S&P 500 fell 18.19 points or 0.5 percent to 3,811.15.

Despite the mixed performance on the day, the major averages all moved notably lower for the week. The Nasdaq plummeted by 4.9 percent, the S&P 500 tumbled by 2.4 percent and the Dow slumped by 1.8 percent.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly higher during trading on Monday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index surged up by 2.4 percent, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index jumped by 1.2 percent.

The major European markets have also shown strong moves to the upside on the day. While the German DAX Index is up by 1.1 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index are up by 1.4 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively.

In commodities trading, crude oil futures are climbing $0.74 to $62.24 a barrel after plummeting $2.03 to $61.50 a barrel last Friday. Meanwhile, after plunging $46.60 to $1,728.80 an ounce in the previous session, gold futures are rising $8.70 to $1,737.50 an ounce.

On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 106.73 yen versus the 106.57 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Friday. Against the euro, the dollar is trading at $1.2051 compared to last Friday’s $1.2075.

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