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Stock futures are flat ahead of Fed’s Jackson Hole symposium

Stock futures are flat ahead of Fed’s Jackson Hole symposium

26 Aug 2021

Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Source: NYSE

Stock futures were mostly flat in overnight trading Thursday ahead of the Federal Reserve’s annual Jackson Hole symposium with investors looking for more details into the central bank’s plans to taper monetary stimulus.

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 27 points. S&P 500 futures ticked up 0.08% and Nasdaq 100 futures added 0.06%.

Shares of Gap gained in extended trading after the apparel retailer’s quarterly earnings report beat on top and bottom lines, while Peloton shares fell after the exercise equipment company’s fourth-quarter financial results missed Wall Street estimates.

The three major U.S. indexes closed Thursday’s regular trading session lower. The Dow snapped a four-day win streak while the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite both broke five-day win streaks.

The Dow lost 192.38 points, or 0.5%. The S&P 500 slid 0.6% and the Nasdaq Composite fell 0.6%.

Market participants monitored new developments in Afghanistan, which appeared to weigh on investor sentiment. The Pentagon on Thursday confirmed that explosions near Hamid Karzai International Airport in Afghanistan killed 12 U.S. service members and wounded 15.

“Markets don’t like uncertainty and the uncertainty in Afghanistan is high and feels like it’s rising,” said Bob Doll, chief investment officer of Crossmark Global Investments..

The Fed’s annual Jackson Hole symposium will be held virtually this year, with Chair Jerome Powell’s speech taking center stage Friday morning. Market participants await insights into the central bank’s plan to slow its monthly bond purchases.

Investors also expect a consumer sentiment reading to be released Friday morning.

The three major stock averages are all set to close the week in the green. The Dow is up 0.3% week-to-date, while the S&P 500 is up 0.6% and the Nasdaq Composite is 1.6% higher.

The indexes are also on track to end the month higher. The Dow is up 0.8% in August. The S&P 500 is 1.7% higher and the Nasdaq Composite is up 1.9% this month.