U.S. stocks are set to claw back some of their losses on Thursday, when the S&P 500 suffered its biggest one-day decline since June 20, but upside momentum this morning is a little underwhelming.
U.S. and Canadian stock futures are up in the 0.10 per cent to 0.30 per cent territory, suggesting only a modest recovery. European stocks and commodity prices are mixed and without a lot of fresh direction.
Most of the major indexes were lower in Asia overnight, reacting to Wall Street's misery on Thursday, when the S&P 500 dropped 1.4 per cent and the Dow fell more than 200 points. Especially notable was India, where the Sensex index tumbled 4 per cent, its steepest decline since September 2011, with banking stocks battered. The rupee fell to a record low against the U.S. dollar, as efforts by policy makers to halt the currency's slide - which include restrictions on how much its citizens and companies can invest abroad - appear to be backfiring.
Chinese stocks ended modestly lower, but saw some dramatic price moves earlier that were blamed on a brokerage's computer error.
Closer to home, it's all about tapering: the cutting back of the Federal Reserve's $85-billion-per-month bond buying program. The majority of economists expect that to begin in September - and the focus is increasingly turning to what degree the stimulus taps will be turned off. There's not a lot scheduled for today that should shed fresh light on the matter.
Now, here's a closer look at what's going on this morning and what's to come.
Futures: S&P 500 +0.30 per cent; Dow +0.15 per cent; Nasdaq +0.28 per cent; S&P Toronto +0.10 per cent
Hong Kong's Hang Seng -0.09 per cent
Shanghai composite index -0.67 per cent
Japan's Nikkei -0.75 per cent
London’s FTSE 100 -0.08 per cent
Germany’s DAX -0.24 per cent
France's CAC 40 +0.09 per cent
WTI crude oil (Nymex Oct) -0.04 per cent at $107.15 (U.S.) a barrel
Gold (Comex Dec) +0.07 per cent at $1,361.80 (U.S.) an ounce
Copper (Comex Dec) +0.85 per cent at $3.37 (U.S.) a pound
Canadian dollar at 96.82 (U.S.), versus 97.05 at yesterday's North American close.
U.S. dollar index up 0.02 at 81.20
U.S. 10-year Treasury yield 2.76 per cent, up 0.04
ECONOMIC INDICATORS TO WATCH:
Canadian manufacturing shipments fell 0.5 per in June from May.
U.S. housing starts for July rose to an annualized rate of 896,000. Forecast was for 900,000.
(915 a.m. ET) U.S. releases the Reuter's/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index for August, forecast to come in at 85.5 from July's 85.1.
STOCKS TO WATCH:
Shares in retailer Nordstrom Inc., which enters the Canadian market next year, are down 3 per cent in the premarket after reporting lower-than-expected quarterly sales and cutting its full-year earnings outlook late Thursday.
Dell Inc. shares are up 0.2 per cent in the premarket after the computer maker reported earnings per share 1 cent above Street views late on Thursday.
THIS MORNING'S TOP INVESTING READS ON THE WEB:
Billionaire George Soros appears to be making a huge bet that the S&P 500 is heading lower.
Warren Buffett isn't doing so hot this quarter.
A look at how global stock markets have performed so far this quarter. No surprise, Canada is way down the list. But who would have expected Argentina to rank No. 1?
How to argue against passive investors.
Apple shares are way up this week, but that doesn't mean CEO Tim Cook is having a good time.
Be skeptical of tactical allocation funds and whether they add value to your portfolio.
The premarket report is constantly updated to reflect the latest news developments and market moves. For instant headlines on breaking economic and corporate news in the premarket, follow Darcy Keith on Twitter at @eyeonequities. You can also be notified using our dashboard feature when new articles appear from this author. Read more on using this feature here.