Friday June 30th


US stock futures rise as Wall Street tries to rebound from tech sell-off

U.S. stock index futures pointed to a higher open on Friday after a sharp sell-off led by technology stocks. Dow futures rose 40 points, while S&P and Nasdaq futures gained 4.5 points and 7 points, respectively. The major indexes fell around 1 percent Thursday as tech stocks tumbled ahead of quarter-end. With Friday marking the last trading day for the quarter, this is usually seen as a time when investors reposition their portfolios or take profits. Tech has been the best-performing sector for most of 2017, rising more than 15 percent in the period. But over the past month it has dropped more than 2 percent. Investors also looked to more data releases, with personal income rising 0.4 percent in May, more than the expected gains of 0.3 percent. Chicago PMI data are due at 9:45 a.m. ET. Consumer sentiment is slated to come out at 10a.m. ET. No major earnings or bond auctions are scheduled. Oil futures, meanwhile, were posting strong gains in morning trade, as investor sentiment continued to be boosted by news of a decline in U.S. output. At 8:33 a.m. ET on Friday, U.S. crude was trading around $45.20, while Brent hovered around $47.56. The bond market will also be in focus, as yields continue to edge higher. In the political sphere, U.S. President Donald Trump will continue with his meeting with South Korean President Moon Jae-in at the White House, with discussion expected to focus on economic and global issues. In Europe, bourses were mostly higher, while Asia-Pacific markets finished trade on a relatively negative note.Japan's Nikkei 225 dropped 0.92 percent or 186.87 points to close at 20,033.43 after trading below the 20,000 level earlier in the session. The Kospi slipped 0.16 percent or 3.87 points to end at 2,391.79 and Australia's S&P/ASX 200 pulled back 1.66 percent or 96.606 points to finish at 5,721.494. Markets in greater China traded lower as President Xi Jinping visited Hong Kong ahead of the twentieth anniversary of the Hong Kong handover. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index declined 0.7 percent. On the mainland, the Shanghai Composite finished higher by 0.09 percent or 3.0015 points at 3,191.064 and the Shenzhen Composite ended up 0.286 percent or 5.4174 points at 1,897.6866. Gold eased on Friday to stay on track for its first monthly loss this year, as hints from leading central banks that the era of easy money may be coming to a close pushed bond yields higher. The metal is highly sensitive to rising yields, which lift the opportunity cost of holding non-interest bearing bullion. Spot gold was down 0.39 percent at $1,240.42 an ounce, while U.S. gold futures for August delivery were 0.39 percent lower at $1,241.00. Spot prices have fallen nearly 2 percent so far in June, and are down 0.4 percent on a quarterly basis. After a strong performance in the first quarter, they are still set to end the first half of the year up 8 percent.