NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. markets are poised to decline Thursday as investors try to interpret Federal Reserve notes while keeping an eye on corporate earnings and the Russia-Ukraine standoff.
On Wall Street, futures for the benchmark S&P 500 index fell 0.4% and the same for the Dow Jones Industrial Average was off 0.3%.
London and Tokyo declined while Shanghai and Frankfurt advanced.
Wall Street closed mixed Wednesday after notes from the latest Fed meeting showed officials suggested a faster pace of interest rate hikes “would likely be warranted.”
However, the minutes “showed a lack of clear commitments on the size of rate hikes and balance sheet reduction,” Yeap Jun Rong of IG said in a report. That suggests the Fed’s attitude might be “less hawkish than previously thought.”
In early trading, the FTSE 100 in London lost 0.5%, while and Frankfurt’s DAX ticked up a slight 0.1%. The CAC 40 in Paris gained 0.3%.
In U.S. off-hours trading, DoorDash climbed 25% to $118.88 per share after the food delivery service reported strong user growth that boosted fourth-quarter revenue by 34% to $1.3 billion. Toy and game maker Hasbro jumped by nearly 5% in premarket.
In Asia, the Shanghai Composite Index gained less than 0.1% to 3,468.04 and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong declined 0.3% to 24,792.77.
The Nikkei 225 in Tokyo lost 0.8% to 27,232.87 gave up 0.8% to 27,232.87 after January exports rose by 9.6% over a year earlier, well below expectations.
The Kospi in Seoul advanced 1% to 2,755.56 after the government reported the economy added 1.1 million jobs in January and the unemployment rate edged lower.
Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 added 0.2% to 7,296.20 and India’s Sensex advanced 0.1% to 58,075.98.
New Zealand and Singapore rose while Jakarta retreated.
Investors are trying to figure out how soon the Fed and other central banks will withdraw economic stimulus to cool inflation that’s spiked to a 40-year high.
According to the Fed’s notes, officials agreed at their January meeting that faster rate hikes would be needed “if inflation does not move down” as the central bank’s policymaking committee expects.
As recently as December, Fed officials forecast inflation would fall to 2.6% from a four-decade high of 5.8%. Most analysts expect Fed officials to raise that forecast at their next meeting in March.
On Monday, James Bullard, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, repeated his call for the Fed to take the aggressive step of raising its benchmark short-term rate by a full percentage point by July 1. Esther George, president of the Kansas City Fed, expressed support for a more gradual approach. Mary Daly of the San Francisco Fed declined to commit herself to more than a modest hike next month.
Investors also are keeping tabs on Russia’s troop movements near its border with Ukraine. The market rallied on Tuesday after Russia said it has moved some troops back to bases, but the U.S. and NATO officials continue to say there is no evidence of that.
Russia is one of the biggest oil producers and any military action that disrupts supplies would jolt prices and global industry.
In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude fell $1.86 to $91.80 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose $1.59 to $93.66 on Wednesday. Brent crude, used as the price basis for international oils, sank $1.63 to $93.18 per barrel in London. It rose $1.53 the previous session to $94.81.
The dollar declined to 115.05 yen from Wednesday’s 115.41 yen. The euro slipped to $1.1376 from $1.1391.
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