Overseas Optimism Pushes US Equity Futures Higher. Econ Data on Deck

by devteam August 20th, 2009 | Share

A hefty 4.5% gain in China’s Shanghai stock index led to optimism in European markets today and now, before the open, US equity futures are looking higher too.

Volatility in the Shanghai index has been leading markets all week long, though US markets were able to recover after opening sharply yesterday. All three major US indexes ended the day about 0.68% up, and today those gains are being extended, albeit slightly. The benchmark S&P 500 is up 3 points to the psychological threshold of 1,000.

With the Shanghai index seeing its largest one-day in five months today, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index followed by closing 1.9% higher, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 closed up 1.8%. In Europe, the FTSE 100 has been trading 1.3% higher, and Germany’s Dax was recently up 1.2%.

US stocks could quickly change after the Jobless Claims report comes out at 8:30.The  weekly report has been relatively stable in recent weeks with first-time claimants hovering around the 550k each week. This week analysts look for some improvement, and there’s some added importance as it’s the survey week for the monthly employment statistics, which means any trend would likely be repeated in the nonfarm payrolls report (released the first Friday of each month.)

That’s the only news before the opening bell, but half an hour into the session markets are hit with two more bits of data, a broad measure of where the economy is heading, and a regional index tracking business conditions in the Philadelphia region. More details after the jump.

Key Releases Today:

8:30 â€

About the Author


Steven A Feinberg (@CPAsteve) of Appletree Business Services LLC, is a PASBA member accountant located in Londonderry, New Hampshire.

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