Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on August 16, 2023 in New York City.
Michael M. Santiago | Getty Images
Stock futures were near flat on Wednesday night as investors digested the Federal Reserve’s latest commentary that future rate hikes are not out of the picture.
Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 42 points, or 0.1%. S&P 500 futures gained 0.08%, while Nasdaq 100 futures were up 0.05%.
Computer networking giant Cisco Systems gained in after-hours trading, advancing about 2%. The company posted fiscal fourth-quarter earnings that beat Wall Street’s expectations. Wolfspeed plunged 12.9% following the company’s fiscal fourth-quarter earnings report, which missed expectations on the bottom line.
The after-hours moves follow a second consecutive losing session for the three major averages. On Wednesday, the S&P 500 dropped 0.76%, while the Dow shed 0.52%. The Nasdaq Composite slipped 1.15%.
Markets reflected investors’ concerns after officials said in the central bank’s July meeting minutes that additional tightening may be necessary to bring down inflation. The federal funds rate is currently in a range between 5.25% to 5.5%.
Stocks have been suffering through a rocky August, with the major averages well in negative territory for the month. But there may be a silver lining: Valuations are coming down from their lofty heights.
“The market and the sectors are losing their momentum,” said Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at CFRA Research. “Because it’s losing its momentum, the valuations are becoming less and less extreme, and I think a lot of investors continue to look to the fourth quarter as to the end of this earnings recession.”
Investors will watch Thursday for a fresh batch of corporate earnings, with retailers Walmart and Tapestry expected to report before the opening bell, and Ross Stores expected after the close. Applied Materials and Keysight Technologies are also due after market close.
Traders will also have an eye out for the latest weekly jobless claims report.