US Stock Futures Signal Lower Open Ahead Of Consumer Price Index, Industrial Production Reports

   on January 16 2013 4:12 AM
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, February 22, 2011. REUTERS

U.S. stock index futures point to a lower open Wednesday ahead of the release of the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for December by the Department of Labor and the Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization report by the Federal Reserve.

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were down 0.26 percent, the futures on the Standard & Poor's 500 Index were down 0.20 percent and those on the Nasdaq 100 Index were down 0.03 percent. 

Investors are expected to focus on the Department of Labor's CPI for December, to be published Wednesday. The CPI, which measures the change in the price of goods and services from the consumers' perspective, is expected to remain flat in December, from a 0.3 percent decrease in November.

Investors will also focus on the Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization report to be published Wednesday. The report measures the change in the total inflation-adjusted value of output produced by manufacturers, mines and utilities. It is expected to rise 0.3 percent in December after a 1.1 percent increase in November.

On Tuesday, U.S. stocks were mixed as investors remained cautious as they focused on corporate earnings, which will be reported later in the week. Investors will continue to focus on earnings reports with JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM) and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS) expected to announce their quarterly results Wednesday.

Meanwhile, according to data released Tuesday in the Department of Commerce's retail sales report, a foremost indicator of consumer spending that accounts for the majority of the country's overall economic activity, sales rose 0.5 percent in December after a 0.4 percent increase in November. Also, according to data released Tuesday by the Department of Labor, the Producer Price Index, which measures the change in the price of goods sold by manufacturers, fell 0.2 percent in December after a 0.8 percent decrease in November.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.24 percent, the S&P 500 Index was up 0.12 percent and the Nasdaq Composite Index declined 0.23 percent.

Asian stocks fell Wednesday as investors remained cautious ahead of quarterly results announcements by companies in the U.S. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Composite fell 88.61 points, India’s Sensex declined 74.78 points, Japan’s Nikkei dropped 278.64 points and South Korea’s Kospi was down 6.29 points.

European stocks fell Wednesday following other global markets' declines. London's FTSE 100 was down 15.56 points, Germany's DAX 30 fell 6.12 points and France's CAC 40 declined 3.27 points. 

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