US futures Higher Ahead of Fed Speech

US stock futures indicate a higher opening ahead of a series of speeches from several Federal Reserve officials

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US futures indicated a higher opening on Monday with investors following through on the strong close the previous week ahead of a series of speeches from the members of the Federal Reserve.

The blue-chip Dow futures increased 58 points, or 0.24 percent. Meanwhile, the S&P 500 futures climbed 8 points, or 0.30 percent, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 futures rose 39 points, or 0.58 percent.

Traders kept close tabs on the string of appearances from Federal Reserve officials to measure the future trajectory of the monetary policy as there is no other scheduled major economic report.

Tom Barkin, who is the president of the Richmond arm of the Fed, will deliver a speech at the George Mason University in Virginia. Several other policymakers are set to participate in the Atlanta Fed’s 23rd Annual Financial Markets Conference.

Among other participants on the Monday event are Chicago Fed president Charles Evans, Philadelphia Fed president Patrick Harker, Atlanta Fed chief Raphael Bostic, and Dallas Fed head Robert Kaplan.

The participants will deliver speeches prior to the remarks from Jerome Powell. Powell will appear at a conference that is hosted together by the Swiss National Bank and the International Monetary Fund. The event will be held in Zurich on Tuesday. Powell is set to deliver a speech entitled “Monetary Policy Influences on Global Financial Conditions and International Capital Flows.”

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Market participants and spectators are expecting the next interest rate hike in June followed by another hike in September.

Meanwhile, the dollar kicked off the week on the upside, which added to the three consecutive weeks of gains, just below a 4-month high.

The US Dollar Index, which gauges the greenback’s strength against a basket of 6 other major currencies, jumped 0.36 percent to 92.66, near its 2018 peak of 92.75.

More than 400 of the S&P 500 firms have already released their earnings reports, with 45 more companies to report this week as the last large wave of first quarter earnings reports.

Among those that are scheduled to release reports are Hertz Global, Tyson Foods, AMC Entertainment, and Sysco.

Further, pharmaceutical and healthcare businesses are keeping close tabs on US President Donald Trump’s speech this week that will outline the new regulations imposed to decrease drug prices.

In addition, the minister from the United States, Canada, and Mexico are set to gather again in Washington to begin the talks regarding the North American Free Trade Agreement. The meeting is hoped to be the final leg of the discussions.

Furthermore, Europe’s major stock markets posted small gains, with companies delivering robust earnings reports as UK markets closed for a public holiday, minimizing the trading activity.

Asian shares closed higher following the US stock market’s rally on Friday on the back of a solid April jobs report.

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