Thursday July 7th


US futures steady after data; oil eyed

U.S. stock index futures indicated a mostly lower open Thursday amid U.S. data and higher oil prices. Brent crude traded slightly higher, above $49.39 a barrel on Thursday, up 0.59 percent, while U.S. crude was at $47.92, up 0.47 percent. A reversal in oil prices helped stocks close higher on Wednesday. On the data front, private sector jobs rose by 172,000 in June, versus consensus expectations of 159,000, according to a report Thursday from ADP and Moody's. Initial jobless claims came in at 254,000 for the week of July 2. Investors will also brace themselves for the June jobs report, due Friday morning. U.S. 10-year Treasury yields were higher at 1.39 percent, while the U.S. 30-year yield was 2.15 percent as of 8:35 a.m. ET. The U.S. 2-year note yield edged higher to roughly 0.61 percent. The U.S. dollar index held steady against a basket of major currencies. The euro traded near $1.11 while the yen traded near 101.11 yen versus the dollar. The British pound traded near $1.30. The pound hit a new low of 1.2796 against the dollar Wednesday, the lowest level since June 20, 1985 when the pound closed at 1.2769 against the dollar. European markets bounced back Thursday, with the pan European Stoxx 600 Index gaining 1.4 percent, helped by gains from banking stocks. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei closed 0.67 percent lower on Thursday while in China, the Shanghai Composite closed 0.01 percent lower. On the earnings front, PepsiCo reported better-than-expected earnings. Barracuda Networks and Helen of Troy are among companies set to report after the bell. Gold steadied on Thursday after rallying to its highest since March 2014 a day earlier on the back of concerns about Britain's vote to leave the European Union, as strength in stocks and the dollar limited gains. Financial markets have been extremely volatile since Britain voted on June 23 to leave the EU bloc, knocking equities and pushing some bond yields to record lows. The moves have boosted the appeal of so-called safe-havens such as gold and silver. Spot gold was at $1,363.86 an ounce, little changed from $1,363.51 late on Wednesday. U.S. gold futures for August delivery were down $1.60 an ounce at $1,365.60.