U.S. Stocks May Move To The Downside In Early Trading

Following the mixed performance seen in the previous session, stocks may move to the downside in early trading on Friday. The major index futures are currently pointing to a modestly lower open for the markets, with the S&P 500 futures down by 0.1 percent.

Early trading on Wall Street may continue to be driven by Nvidia (NVDA), as the AI chipmaker is slumping by 1.6 percent in pre-market trading.

An advance by Nvidia contributed to modest strength early on Thursday, but a sharp pullback by the AI darling and market leader weighed on the Nasdaq and S&P 500 over the course of the session.

Overall trading activity may be somewhat subdued, however, as traders await additional clarity on the outlook for interest rates.

Shortly after the start of trading, the National Association of Realtors is scheduled to release its report on existing home sales in the month of May. Existing home sales are expected to decrease to an annual rate of 4.10 million in May after slumping to a rate of 4.14 million in April.

The Conference Board is also due to release its report on leading economic indicators in the month of May. The leading economic index is expected to dip by 0.3 percent in May after falling by 0.6 percent in April.

Following a modest move to the upside early in the session, the major U.S. stock indexes moved in starkly opposite directions during trading on Thursday. While the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 pulled back off their early highs and into negative territory, the narrower Dow saw continued strength.

The Dow ended the day up 299.90 points or 0.8 percent at a nearly one-month closing high of 39,134.76, but the S&P 500 fell 13.86 points or 0.3 percent to 5,473.17 and the Nasdaq slumped 140.64 points or 0.8 percent to 17,721.59.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower during trading on Friday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index edged down by 0.1 percent and China’s Shanghai Composite Index dipped by 0.2 percent, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index tumbled by 1.7 percent.

The major European markets have also moved to the downside on the day. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index has slid by 0.7 percent, the German DAX Index and the French CAC 40 Index are both down by 0.6 percent.

In commodities trading, crude oil futures are inching up $0.05 to $81.34 a barrel after climbing $0.58 to $81.29 a barrel on Thursday. Meanwhile, after jumping $22.10 to $2,369 an ounce in the previous session, gold futures are rising $8.40 to $2,377.40 an ounce.

On the currency front, the U.S. dollar is trading at 158.96 yen versus the 158.93 yen it fetched at the close of New York trading on Thursday. Against the euro, the dollar is valued at $1.0690 compared to yesterday’s $1.0702.

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