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S&P, Dow futures inch higher ahead of inflation data

Kitco News

(Reuters) - S&P and Dow futures rose on Tuesday as investors favored stocks expected to benefit from an economic recovery this year, although gains were muted in the run-up to consumer price data, which could affect the monetary policy.

The S&P 500 and Dow Jones had snapped five days of losses after a volatile session on Monday, with economically sensitive sectors such as energy and financials supporting the indexes.

Focus now turns to August consumer price data, due at 8:30 A.M. ET (1230 GMT), which is expected to show if a spike in inflation this year is as transitory as the Federal Reserve has posited. A Reuters poll expects the reading to be steady from July.

Investors are concerned that a sustained rise in inflation could push the Fed into tightening policy earlier than signaled, especially after data last week showed a strong rise in August producer prices.

U.S. S&P 500 E-minis were up 5 points, or 0.11%, at 06:15 am ET. Dow E-minis were up 25 points, or 0.07%, while Nasdaq 100 E-minis were up 5 points, or 0.03%.

Focus is also on the possible passage of U.S. President Joe Biden’s $3.5 trillion budget package, which is expected to include a proposed corporate tax rate hike to 26.5% from 21%.

A possible hike in corporate taxes comes as yet another uncertainty, along with recent concerns over slowing economic growth due to rising COVID-19 cases.

Market participants now expect a substantial correction in stock markets by the end of the year, with some investors turning bearish on a global economic recovery.

Oil stocks, which were the best performers on Monday, extended gains into premarket trading, as crude prices hit a six-week high on expectations of more supply disruptions due to a hurricane in the Gulf Coast.

Major technology stocks, which had lagged their broader peers in the previous session, were muted in premarket trade. U.S.-listed Chinese firms fell as investors remained wary of regulatory shocks from Beijing.

Reporting by Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur

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