Friday May 20th


Futures higher; Dow, S&P tracking for first 4-week losing streak since 2014

U.S. stock index futures were higher on Friday morning as traders looked towards the release of existing home sales and comments from Fed Governor Daniel Tarullo. Tarullo is set to speak at 9 a.m. ET at the National Association of Insurance Commissioners International Insurance Forum in Washington, D.C., while existing home sales are scheduled to be released at 10 a.m. As of the close Thursday, the major averages were tracking for a weekly decline. The Dow and S&P were on pace for their first four-week losing streak since the one ended October 2014, while the Nasdaq composite was on pace for its first five-week losing streak since 2012. U.S. stocks closed lower Thursday after comments from New York Fed President William Dudley and the latest Fed minutes increased prospects of a rate hike as soon as June. The U.S. dollar index was flat, with the euro near $1.122 and the yen near 110.4 yen against the greenback. Treasury yields were higher, with the 2-year yield near 0.90 percent and the 10-year yield around 1.87 percent. On the earnings front Campbell Soup and Deere, are set to report before the bell. Foot Locker posted earnings that were in line with analysts expectations on Friday. In Europe, the pan European Stoxx 600 Index was up 0.97 percent on Friday morning. In Asia, Japan's Nikkei closed 0.54 percent higher on Friday. In China, the Shanghai Composite closed 0.68 percent higher. Oil prices were lower on Friday as traders said brimming crude storage sites across the world were limiting upside following a series of supply outages in Nigeria, Canada and Libya. The outages have tightened the global oversupply picture that has gripped the oil market for two years, but high inventories are preventing actual supply shortfalls, traders said. Global benchmark Brent crude prices traded down 28 cents at $48.52 a barrel at 8:40 a.m. ET (1240 GMT), slipping further from a six-month high of $49.85 reached two days ago. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude futures traded at $47.95 a barrel, down 21 cents, also falling from a seven-month high of $48.95. Gold edged higher on Friday after two days of losses but remained on track for its biggest weekly slide in nearly two months on growing expectations of an increase in U.S. interest rates as soon as next month. Spot gold was up 0.1 percent at $1,255.55 an ounce, while U.S. gold futures for June delivery were gained $2.10 to $1,256.90. Spot prices are down 1.5 percent this week and facing a third straight week of losses.