US Stock Futures Suggest Higher Open Following Wednesday's Slump; GDP, Jobless Claims Data And Banking Stocks, Including Citigroup, Could Influence Session

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A phone hangs above the floor of the New York Stock Exchange shortly after the opening of the market on Aug. 19, 2011. Reuters/Lucas Jackson

Following Wednesday's slump, triggered by a negative reaction to Facebook's latest acquisition and the King Digital public offer, Thursday's trading session could be influenced by the fate of banking stocks, especially Citigroup (NYSE:C) after the Fed rejected the bank's capital plan, and by economic indicators, including fourth quarter GDP data and jobless claims.

Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 0.27 percent while futures on the S&P 500 were up 0.27 percent and those on the Nasdaq were up 0.29 percent. On Wednesday, the Dow fell 0.6 percent while the S&P 500 dropped 0.7 percent and the Nasdaq plunged 1.43 percent. On Thursday, Citigroup's stock was down 5.3 percent in pre-market trading.

On the earnings front, Accenture Plc (NYSE:ACN) and GameStop Corp. (NYSE:GME) are among those scheduled to declare earnings before markets open, while Red Hat Inc. (NYSE:RHT) is expected to announce earnings after market hours.

On the data front, the fourth quarter GDP number is due at 8:30 a.m. EDT, and a Wall Street Journal consensus estimate pegs it at 2.7 percent, higher than the previous quarter's rate of growth of 2.4 percent. Data on jobless claims for the week ended March 22 are also due at 8:30 a.m.

In Europe, markets were mixed with the Stoxx Europe 600 index trading down 0.07 percent while the FTSE 100 was down 0.37 percent. Germany’s DAX-30 was up 0.12 percent while France's CAC-40 slipped 0.04 percent.

In Asia, Japan's Nikkei-225 rose 1.01 percent while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 fell 0.5 percent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng slipped 0.24 percent while the Shanghai Composite dropped 0.83 percent. South Korea’s Kospi rose 0.7 percent and India’s BSE Sensex was trading up 0.43 percent.

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