Before the Bell: The U.S. stock market put in a somewhat mixed session yesterday. Although the broader market averages settled lower, many names listed on the NASDAQ managed to make progress. Investors seem pleased that the economy continues to show improvement, but rising inflation, and possibly higher interest rates, are also of some concern. Of note, while inflationary pressures have been mounting, it is not yet clear if this development will prove to be transitory, or will become a persistent issue. Overnight, the international markets were divided. In Asia, the Nikkei delivered a sluggish performance. In Europe, the FTSE 100 put in a stronger session. Meanwhile, on our shores, the S&P futures are currently higher by about 10 points, indicating a positive start to the day.
In economic news, there were no major reports released yesterday. However, traders were still likely digesting the May employment figures that were published at the end of last week. While that report showed an improving employment situation, it was probably not so overwhelming as to inspire the Federal Reserve to immediate action. Today, we get a look at the trade balance figures for the month of April. The trade deficit is expected to come in at about $69 billion, a bit smaller than the prior month’s figure. A monthly job market report is also due to be released.
In the corporate arena, traders continue to pay attention to the latest quarterly profit reports. After the market closed yesterday, Marvell Technology (MRVL), a semiconductor company that makes chips for cloud computing and data storage applications, posted better-than-anticipated results and provided an upbeat outlook. Later this week, we will hear from GameStop (GME), a video game retailer that has been in the news quite a bit lately. In other corporate news, yesterday shares of Biogen (BIIB) rose sharply, after the biotechnology giant announced that its Alzheimer’s drug has received regulatory approval. The news could lead to further investor interest in the healthcare market sector.
Technically, the S&P 500 Index has been holding steady as the month of June unfolds. The major market index is sitting just above the 4,200 mark, and it remains to be seen if the bulls can push stocks higher from here. Of note, the NASDAQ seems to be firming up, and that is a positive development. The technology heavy index contains many dynamic growth names essential to the health of the broader market. – Adam Rosner