U.S. stock index futures indicated more gains ahead for Wall Street on Wednesday, following a two day rally driven by fading worries over the omicron variant of COVID-19.
How are stock-index futures trading?
S&P 500 futures ES00 rose 0.2% to 4,697
Dow Jones Industrial Average futures
rose 88 points, or 0.3%, to 35,801
rose 0.3% to 16,368
On Tuesday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average
rose 492.4 points, or 1.4%, to 35,719.43, the S&P 500 index
advanced 95.08 points, or 2.1%, to 4,686.75 and the Nasdaq Composite
jumped 461.76 points, or 3%, to 15,686.92.
What’s driving the market?
The Dow industrials have rallied over 1,100 points in the last two sessions, as investors have cheered up and hunted for bargains in the wake of selling after the new omicron variant in South Africa was announced in late November.
“In theory, such strong gains are sign of instability and should be taken with caution, however the good news is that the volatility is easing, and the VIX index dropped 20% yesterday, meaning that the latest fears could slowly begin fading,” said Ipek Ozkardeskaya, senior analyst at Swissquote in a note to clients.
Read: After a brief omicron scare, the Dow is now poised for the best start to a December in 24 years. Here’s what history says happens next.
Stock index futures jumped early Wednesday after Pfizer and BionTech reported results from an “initial laboratory study” showing their COVID-19 vaccine neutralized the omicron variant of the coronavirus after three doses — the full two-dose regimen plus a booster shot.
Prior to Pfizer’s announcement, a small study from South African scientists showed that the variant may partially evade vaccines, but vaccinations should still defend against more serious disease. Those doubly vaccinated with a previous COVID infection showed greater resistance to the variant, raising hopes that boosters may keep people safer, the study showed.
assessment that its antibody treatment also appears to work against omicron, cheered investors on Tuesday.
But elsewhere, there were reports of a “stealth” omicron offshoot that was more difficult to identify via standard PCR tests, with Australia’s Queensland government confirming one case, and others found in South Africa and Canada.
Also lifting markets lately is the perception that the Federal Reserve’s more hawkish tilt has been digested and priced in, said Ozkardeskaya, but the analyst and others remain wary.
“While the buy-everything trade will have its day in the sun for the rest of this week, some serious non-virus risk points are looming,” Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at OANDA, told clients in a note. “Friday sees US CPI [consumer price inflation] and a print at or above 7.0% is going to raise the heat at next week’s FOMC.”
The cost of living jumped 0.9% in October and rose 6.2% on an annual basis, the highest rate since November 1990.
Economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires and The Wall Street Journal are forecasting CPI to rise 0.7% for November and 6.7% annually. That data comes ahead of Wednesday’s JOLTS job openings for October, which are expected to rise to 10.6 million from 10.4 million.
What companies are in focus?
Shares of Chinese social-media company Weibo Corp.
fell 7.2% in their Hong Kong trading debut. U.S.-listed shares were down 2%.
Stock in Stitch Fix
slumped 23% in premarket trading after the company, which sells clothing through subscriptions and more, issued disappointing guidance.
How are other assets trading?
The yield on the 10-year Treasury note
fell 1 point to
to 1.47% Tuesday. Treasury yields and prices move in opposite directions.
The ICE U.S. Dollar Index
a measure of the currency against a half-dozen other monetary units, was down just under 0.1%.
In oil futures, West Texas Intermediate crude CL00 for January delivery
rose 0.1% to $72.12 a barrel.
for February delivery
was unchanged at $1,784.90 an ounce.
The Stoxx Europe 600 Index
slipped 0.1%, while London’s FTSE 100 Index
In Asia, the Shanghai Composite Index
closed 1.1% higher, while the Hang Seng Index
was flat in Hong Kong and China’s CSI 300
advanced 1.5%. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index