A Specialist trader works inside a booth on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., July 13, 2021.
Brendan McDermid | Reuters
Stock futures edged slightly higher in overnight trading after a rise in technology stocks boosted the Nasdaq Composite to its third-straight positive day on Thursday.
Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 60 points, or 0.17%. S&P 500 futures added 0.26% and Nasdaq 100 futures rose 0.34%.
Tech strength continued after hours as shares of social media companies Twitter and Snap each jumped following better-than-expected second-quarter earnings reports.
The major U.S. indexes closed Thursday’s regular trading session higher to notch a three-day win streak. The Dow rose 25.35 points, or 0.07%. The S&P 500 climbed 0.2% higher. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite led the markets with a 0.36% gain.
All three U.S. stock averages are on pace to close the week in the green for a fourth positive week in five, rebounding from last week’s losses and Monday’s sharp sell-off.
Microsoft had the most positive impact on the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq on Thursday; the stock closed 1.7% higher. Salesforce had the greatest positive impact on the Dow as the software stock gained 2.6% on Thursday.
The strength in tech shares comes as the continued spread of the highly contagious delta Covid variant raises concerns about economic growth.
“We saw during the depths of the pandemic that tech stocks and their earnings held up the best, so I think a lot of investors are going back to the well, given we have a Covid resurgence,” Yung-Yu Ma, chief investment strategist at BMO Wealth Management, said. “Long term interest rates coming down as much as they have also makes those stocks more attractive.”
Major technology companies including Microsoft, Google-parent Alphabet, Apple, Facebook and Amazon are set to report second-quarter earnings next week.