Thursday October 22nd


Dow futures up 100 points amid Draghi remarks, data

U.S. stock index futures pointed to a sharply higher open on Thursday as dozens of companies and three Dow components report earnings and investors wait for more housing market data. Two Dow stocks — Caterpillar and 3M — reported earnings ahead of the open. McDonald's also reported, beating on both earnings and revenue. 3M results were mixed, while Caterpillar's missed on both lines. Other companies that reported before the bell include Under Armour, Dow Chemical, and Dunkin' Brands. Big tech weighs in after the close, with Google parent Alphabet, and Microsoft, as well as AT&T, Capital One, Juniper Networks, Stryker and Pandora. More housing market data will also be in focus with September's existing home sales figures at 10:00 a.m. ET and August FHFA housing price index due at 9:00 a.m. ET. The September Chicago Fed national activity index came in at -0.37, slightly higher than the -0.39 August reading. Weekly jobless claims came in at 259,000, below the expected 265,000. In Europe, equities traded higher after the European Central Bank left interest rates unchanged and as Draghi talked down the euro. The ECB governing council meeting is being held in Malta rather than Frankfurt this month. In Asia, China's key Shanghai Composite index swung up in late-day trading to close up 1.5 percent, recouping some of Wednesday's 3.5 percent slump which took the index down to a near one-week low. Nikkei drops 0.6%. The rally in Japan lost steam, with the benchmark Nikkei 225 stepping back from Wednesday's six-week highs. Expectations for further stimulus from the Bank of Japan (BOJ) had taken the Tokyo bourse on an upward ride in the recent sessions. Oil prices rose above $48 a barrel on Thursday, propelled by technical buying and as investors re-evaluated U.S. data that showed falling stockpiles of fuel as well as higher crude inventories. Brent for December delivery rose 43 cents, or 0.9 percent, to $48.28 a barrel by 8:51 a.m. EDT (1251 GMT). The global crude benchmark finished down 86 cents, or 1.8 percent, on Wednesday, after hitting $47.50, its lowest since early October. U.S. crude for December delivery climbed 45 cents, or 1 percent to $45.65 a barrel, having settled down $1.09, or 2.4 percent, in the previous session. It hit a three-week low of $44.86 on Wednesday. Gold steadied near its lowest in more than a week on Thursday, pressured by a firmer dollar and uncertainty over the timing of a U.S. Federal Reserve interest rate hike. Spot gold was broadly steady at $1,166.46 an ounce, failing to recover losses from the previous session. The metal slipped to $1,163.50 a day earlier, its lowest level since Oct. 13, before regaining some ground to close 0.8 percent lower.