Friday October 13th


Futures point to a slightly higher open as earnings season continues

U.S. stock index futures pointed to a slightly higher open Friday, as investors turned their attention to a number of Fed speeches and corporate earnings reports. Dow Jones industrial average futures rose 31 points, while S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures gained 3 points and 11.25 points, respectively. Bank of America and PNC Financial Services Group both posted earnings and revenue that beat the Street, but Wells Fargo posted lighter-than-expected revenue. Looking to data, the consumer price index (CPI) and retail sales both rose slightly less than expected. Later on in the day, businesses inventories and consumer sentiment are set to be published at 10 a.m. ET. Elsewhere, shortly after President Donald Trump signed an executive order related to health care Thursday, the administration announced that it would stop making crucial payment to insurers who sell Obamacare health plans. In commodities, crude prices rose in morning trade, with sentiment boosted by news that U.S. crude production and inventories had recently dropped. At 8:32 a.m. ET, U.S. crude traded just around $51.61 per barrel, while Brent hovered around $57.45. Overseas, European stocks were posting minor gains in early market trade, while markets in Asia closed mostly higher. Japan's Nikkei 225 rose 0.96 percent, or 200.46 points, to close at 21,155.18 after touching a fresh 21-year high earlier in the session. Greater China markets were higher as investors digested trade data released Friday. The Hang Seng Index added 0.05 percent by 3:15 p.m. HK/SIN. On the mainland, the Shanghai Composite ended 0.16 percent higher at 3,391.5377 while the Shenzhen Composite tacked on 0.665 percent to close at 2,036.8060. Gold was on track for its first weekly rise in five weeks on Friday ahead of U.S. inflation data later in the day that could give clues on the pace of U.S. interest rate rises. Bullion bumped up against strong technical resistance after the dollar and U.S. bond yields fell this week, helping the metal rise to its highest since Sept. 26. "We've had a good run, and traders are happy to book some profits ahead of $1,300 considering the strong level of resistance," Saxo Bank analyst Ole Hansen said. Spot gold rose 0.63 percent to $1,301.61, rallying after the consumer price index reported a lower increase than forecast. It was set for a weekly gain of 1.4 percent.