Futures Look to Extend Recent Gains
Futures are heading higher in premarket action Tuesday, as the Fed begins its two day FOMC policy meeting. Many expect additional monetary intervention to help stave off any fiscal cliff effects. With only a few weeks remaining until the January 1st deadline, any deal would realistically have to come by this coming weekend to give enough time to hammer out the details. I expect to stay within a narrow trading range until the Fed announcement tomorrow. S&P 500 Index futures rose 3.3 points, or 0.2%, to 1,423.50. Futures on the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 34 points, or 0.3%, to 13,221. Nasdaq 100 futures gained 7 points to 2,657.50.
The blue chips closed higher for the fourth consecutive session, while the S&P hit its highest level in 5 weeks on Monday. Equities have now recovered all of their post-election declines as the fiscal cliff looms. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 14.75 points, or 0.1%, to 13,169.88. Also up for a fourth consecutive session, the S&P 500 Index rose half a point to 1,418.55, with materials advancing the most and consumer discretionary the heaviest weight among its 10 major sectors. The Nasdaq Composite Index added 8.92 points, or 0.3%, to 2,986.96.
Currencies and Commodities
Oil futures for January delivery rose 44 cents, or 0.5% to $86 a barrel in electronic trading, while gold slipped $5.10 to $1,709.50 an ounce as the greenback moved higher. Silver traded down 27 cents at $33.11 an ounce.
International Trade: Measures the difference between imports and exports of both tangible goods and services. Imports may act as a drag on domestic growth and they may also increase competitive pressures on domestic producers. Exports boost domestic production. We have had huge trade deficits in recent years, with foreign countries able to produce goods cheaper. The trade gap is expected to widen to $42.8 billion in October, up from the prior months reading of $41.5 billion. Exports rebounded 3.1 percent, while imports increased 1.5 percent. The range goes from -$44.6 billion on the low end to -$41.0 billion on the high side.