Investors look set to snap up tech stocks on Monday, following an eventful week in which the major stock-market averages actually rose despite wild swings.
Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average
fell 69 points, or 0.2%, to 34526
Futures on the S&P 500
were nearly steady at 4424
Futures on the Nasdaq 100
rose by 73 points, or 0.5%, to 14506
Last week, the Dow
rose by 1.3% and the S&P 500
gained 0.8%, while the Nasdaq Composite
finished fractionally higher. Heading into the final day of the month, the S&P 500 has slumped by 7% in January.
What’s driving markets
Speculation about the direction of Federal Reserve interest rates is sure to play a part in driving markets again. The president of the Atlanta Fed, Raphael Bostic, told the Financial Times that the central bank could lift rates by a half-point in March, though he is sticking with his call for three quarter-point rises for all of 2022.
“If markets were looking for reassurance from the Federal Reserve last week about the pace of policy tightening, they didn’t get it, with [Chair Jerome] Powell insisting that all Fed policy options were open for March and beyond. While this seems entirely sensible; it wasn’t the message increasingly nervous markets wanted to hear,” said Michael Hewson, chief market analyst at CMC Markets UK.
“In essence it was the Fed saying to markets that the days of handholding are over; and that their priority now is inflation, and not the jobs market, as we look towards Friday’s jobs report, where the focus has been less on the headline jobs number in recent months, and more on the wages numbers.”
Earnings season ramps up this week. Strategists at Goldman Sachs say of the S&P 500 companies that have reported, 52% have offered guidance above analyst expectations even as most fourth-quarter results have trumped expectations.