Futures Pointing To Roughly Flat Open On Wall Street – U.S. Commentary

Stocks may show a lack of direction in early trading on Monday following the mixed performance seen last week. The major index futures are currently pointing to a roughly flat open for the markets, with the Dow futures up by just 3 points.

Traders may be reluctant to make significant moves amid lingering concerns about the Turkish economy and the recent sell-off by the country’s currency.

The Turkish lira hit a new record low against the U.S. dollar in Asian trading before regaining some ground after Turkey’s central bank took measures to boost liquidity in the foreign exchange market.

Over the weekend, Turkish Finance Minister Berat Albayrak announced the government plans to calm the highly volatile financial markets.

A report from Reuters noted Albayrak pledged to take “necessary steps” but did not provide details on what those steps included.

Traders may also stick to the sidelines amid the lack of major U.S. economic data scheduled to be released on Monday.

The economic calendar picks up in the coming days with the release of reports on import and export prices, retail sales, industrial production, homebuilder confidence, housing starts, and consumer sentiment.

Following the lackluster performance seen over the two previous sessions, stocks moved notably lower during trading on Friday. The major averages all moved to the downside after closing mixed for two straight days.

The major averages ended the day firmly in negative territory but off their lows of the session. The Dow slid 196.09 points or 0.8 percent to 25,313.14, the Nasdaq fell 52.67 points or 0.7 percent to 7,839.11 and the S&P 500 dropped 20.30 points or 0.7 percent to 2,833.28.

For the week, the major averages turned in a mixed performance. While the Nasdaq inched up by 0.1 percent, the S&P 500 dipped by 0.2 percent and the Dow fell by 0.6 percent.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved notably lower during trading on Monday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index plunged by 2 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index tumbled by 1.5 percent.

Meanwhile, the major European markets are turning in a mixed performance on the day. While the French CAC 40 Index has inched up by 0.1 percent, the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index is down by 0.3 percent and the German DAX Index is down by 0.4 percent.

In commodities trading, crude oil futures are falling $0.27 to $67.36 a barrel after climbing $0.82 to $67.63 a barrel last Friday. Meanwhile, an ounce of gold is trading at $1,208.10, down $10.90 from the previous session’s close of $1,219. On Friday, gold slipped $0.90.

On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 110.78 yen compared to the 110.83 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Friday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.1418 compared to last Friday’s $1.1413.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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