Wednesday February 15th

15-02-2017

Futures point to mixed open on Wall Street amid data deluge

U.S. stock index futures pointed to a mixed open on Wednesday as traders eyed further comments from the Federal Reserve and digest a host of economic data. On the data front, the consumer price index (CPI) rose 0.6 percent in January, above the expected 0.3 percent increase. Retail sales, meanwhile, rose 0.4 percent last month. Industrial production and capacity utilization scheduled for 9:15 ET and business inventories as well as the national association of home buyers (NAHB) survey released at 10 a.m ET. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen is due to testify before the House Financial Services Committee for a second consecutive day. Her comments regarding U.S. economic policy on Tuesday triggered a bond market rout and helped drive stocks to new highs. On the earnings front, PepsiCo is among the companies that reported before the bell. Avis Budget, Chemours and CF Industries are among the other companies of interest all due to report after the market close. In Europe, the pan-European Stoxx-600 index was around 0.3 percent higher on Wednesday morning. In Asia, the Shanghai Composite in China closed 0.16 percent lower, while the Nikkei in Japan closed 1.03 percent higher. In oil markets, prices dipped slightly amid concerns that OPEC producers would not be able to continue reducing global oversupply at the rate it had pledged in a landmark deal which took effect in January. Brent crude traded at around $55.63 a barrel on Tuesday, down 0.61 percent, while U.S. crude was around $52.83 a barrel, down 0.7 percent. Gold's spot price slipped on Wednesday, paring the previous day's slim gains, after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's suggestion that U.S. interest rates could rise sooner rather than later drove the dollar to a 3-1/2 week high. Spot gold was down 0.23 percent at $1,225.37 an ounce.