US Futures Range-Bound Ahead Of GDP Data

  on

Futures on major U.S. stock indices remained range-bound Friday ahead of the release of new economic data, which will include key GDP figures.

Futures on the S&P 500 were down 0.04 percent, futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 0.05 percent and Nasdaq100 futures were up 0.14 percent.

Investors are eagerly waiting the GDP numbers to understand the current situation in the world's largest economy.

The Commerce Department is due to report its first estimate of real GDP growth for the first quarter before the markets open. Economists are forecasting that the report will show a slightly slower activity during the January-March period compared to the fourth quarter of last year, but still stronger compared to earlier in 2011.

We look for real Q1 GDP growth at a 2.7 percent annual rate compared to a 3.0 percent rate in Q4 of last year. Consumer spending likely advanced 2.3 percent. Private fixed investment is expected up 4.8 percent and government expenditures declined, said a note from Credit Agricole.

Investors also eye the Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index which is due to be released after markets open Friday. The index is expected to show that confidence levels remain unchanged at 75.7 in the final April reading.

On the earnings front, Procter & Gamble, Chevron Corp., Merck & Co, Goodyear Tire & Rubber and Simon Property Group will release their quarterly earnings before the opening bell.

European markets are currently trading higher with the FTSE 100 up by 10.87 points, DAX30 up by 2.63 points and CAC 40 up by 9.38 points.

Late Thursday, S&P downgraded its rating on Spain's debt by two notches to BBB+ from A, with a negative outlook citing significant risks to Spanish economic growth and budgetary performance. S&P also lowered the short-term sovereign credit rating to 'A-2′ from 'A-1.′

Join the Discussion