Wednesday November 16th


Stock futures slip as investors await October retail sales data

U.S. stock markets index futures dipped Wednesday as investors weighed another lighter-than-expected inflation report and looked ahead to retail sales data. Futures tied to the Dow Jones Industrial Average traded marginally lower. S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 futures also fell slightly. Those moves came after Target reported much weaker-than-expected earnings for the third quarter. The results weighed on futures and sent the stock down more than 13%. Target also warned of a weak holiday quarter. Wall Street is coming off a positive session, with the S&P 500 closing up 0.87% on Tuesday and the Dow adding 56.22 points, or 0.17%. The Nasdaq jumped 1.45% and is the only major average on pace to eke out slight gains for the week. The producer price index report, which measures wholesale prices, came in below expectations, which alleviated some of investors’ concerns around inflation. Chinese technology stocks were among the best performers Tuesday, with the KraneShares CSI China Internet ETF gaining 9.56% for its best daily performance since March 16. Nine out of 11 S&P 500 sectors rose, led to the upside by communication services and information technology. Both health care and materials posted slight losses. Stocks have staged a solid run following last week’s better-than-feared consumer price index report. The S&P 500 last week posted its best weekly stretch since June and all the major averages are on track to finish the month with gains. Some investors say a near-term retreat is on the horizon, however. “In the short term, the market is very extended and overdue to pull back and digest the recent rally,” said Adam Sarhan, CEO of 50 Park Investments. Retail sales due out Wednesday could offer another look at consumer behavior amid inflation. Shares in the Asia-Pacific were mostly lower on Wednesday as world leaders gathered in Bali, Indonesia for a second day of the Group of 20 summit. The Nikkei 225 in Japan reversed earlier losses to close 0.14% higher at 28,028.30 as heavyweight SoftBank Group climbed 2.94%. The Topix was fractionally lower at 1,963.29. South Korea’s Kospi was 0.12% lower at 2,477.45, and Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 shed 0.27% to 7,122.20. In Hong Kong, the Hang Seng index was 1.04% lower in the final hour of trade, and the Hang Seng Tech index fell 1.82%. Mainland China’s Shanghai Composite was 0.45% lower at 3,119.98 and the Shenzhen Component slipped 1.02% to 11,235.56. Oil prices rose on Wednesday, erasing earlier losses, after an incident involving a commercial vessel off the coast of Oman, but rising Covid-19 cases in China capped gains. Brent crude futures gained 53 cents, or 0.6%, to $94.39 a barrel, and U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures rose 28 cents, or 0.3%, to $87.20 a barrel. Both benchmarks fell more than $1 earlier in the session. Gold rose on Wednesday as the dollar eased, while reports of a tanker being hit by a projectile off the coast of Oman also boosted the safe-haven metal’s appeal. Spot gold rose 0.2% to $1,780.88 per ounce, while U.S. gold futures gained 0.5% to $1,785.